Oftentimes, child custody is among the most hotly contested divorce-related issues, and if you are someone who cannot agree on a custody agreement with your spouse, there is a very good chance that the court will order a child custody evaluation to help determine your custody agreement. This evaluation is not legally binding, however, judges will strongly consider the judge’s determination. Read on and reach out to our experienced New Jersey family law attorneys to learn more about child custody evaluations in New Jersey.
What happens in a child custody evaluation?
When two parents or a court seeks to have a better understanding of what is best for their children, they will oftentimes request a child custody evaluation, wherein a mental health professional will evaluate your family situation, as well as your child’s needs, to determine, to the best of his or her ability, what custody agreement would be in your child’s best interests. Though every child custody evaluation is different and depends on the exact circumstances of the situation at hand, there are various steps and traits that each child custody evaluation will have. They are as follows:
- In most cases, there will be up to three separate interviews between the evaluator and both parents
- There will generally be up to two planned interviews between the evaluator and each child involved
- The child custody evaluator will most likely interview various outside parties, including teachers, therapists, doctors, and more regarding your child’s well-being, as well as the relationship your child has to both you and his or her other parent.
- There will be a planned time in which the evaluator will observe both parents in regards to their relationship with their child. This can either be in the parent’s home, the evaluator’s office, or both.
- Depending on the circumstances, the evaluator may conduct psychological testing on both you, the parent, and your child
Upon completion of the process, your child custody evaluator will then create a formal recommendation to the court regarding what his or her assessment was of your child, both parents, and what he or she feels would be the best child custody agreement in terms of your child’s best interests. If you have any additional questions, please feel free to reach out to our New Jersey family law attorneys today. We are always here to help.
Contact our experienced Bergen County firm
At Townsend, Tomaio & Newmark, our attorneys have extensive experience helping clients to understand and protect their legal rights before, during, and after the divorce process in towns across New Jersey and Bergen County, including Hackensack, Ridgewood, Paramus, Teaneck, and Fort Lee. To speak with our team of divorce lawyers today in a free and confidential consultation regarding your concerns about your divorce, please contact us online, or through our Hackensack, NJ office at (201) 397-1750.