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What a custody evaluator may look at during an evaluation

If you are in the midst of a child custody dispute, and you cannot agree on legal custody, physical custody or parenting time, chances are that the court will order a custody evaluation. This is where a third party will gather information and make recommendations to the court as to how the court should award custody.

While custody evaluations are fairly common, preparing for them is not. After all, most parents do not appreciate having some stranger evaluate their parenting. Nevertheless, if your dispute isn’t resolved through traditional methods of alternative dispute resolution, a custody evaluation may have to be a necessary evil to deal with.

This post will detail a few things that custody evaluators look for. 

Stability – It is well known that kids thrive in stable, consistent environments. Because of this, evaluators are going to look for signs of stability, and also question parents on how they will maintain it going forward. After all, the child’s environment is one of the factors considered in the best interests of the child inquiry.

Other important family relationships – Naturally, the evaluator will look at the child’s relationship with each parent, but he or she will likely examine the relationships the child has with extended family members such as aunts, uncles, and grandparents.

Willingness to include the other parent – Another important aspect is how willing a parent is to promote the child’s relationship with the other parent. They also look for measures of compromise between parents; especially in terms of being able to resolve disputes, so that they don’t fester into bigger problems.

The custody evaluation process is critical in determining custody. To prepare for it, contact an experienced family law attorney.

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