Undergoing a Psychological Evaluation for Child Custody Determination
Child custody is not determined through one quick decision. To make sure that a child’s needs are met after his or her parents’ divorce, the court examines a variety of factors present in both parents’ lifestyles to determine the best custody arrangement for the child. This process can take a considerable amount of time and involve multiple types of data about the parents. One type of data is each parent’s psychological profile.
A psychological profile is an understanding of how an individual relates to others. It is a combination of his or her attitudes, values, expectations, and communication and parenting styles that show his or her fitness as a parent. As part of the child custody determination process, the court might require that each parent undergo a psychological evaluation.
What Does a Psychological Evaluation Entail?
Generally, it involves individual interviews between the parents and a psychologist. The psychologist’s goal is to determine each parent’s relationship with the child as well as his or her fitness as a parent. They might discuss the parent’s feelings about the divorce, the parent’s thoughts about parenting after the divorce, and what a typical day looks like for the parent.
The psychologist might also want to talk with the child to determine his or her feelings about the divorce. Whether this happens or not depends on the child’s age and whether the court feels an evaluation of the child is necessary. In some cases, merely going through your child’s previous academic and medical records is sufficient.
If you are asked to undergo a psychological evaluation as part of the child custody determination process, expect to take a personality test. Do not lie on the test or attempt to provide the “right” answers – when you are taking a personality test, the right answers are those that most accurately describe you. Take the test seriously and answer everything truthfully. Do not be afraid of a psychological evaluation. The court did not order it to punish you. The court ordered it to get a better understanding of who you are as a parent.
Work with a New Jersey Family Attorney
When you are going through a divorce, you likely have a lot on your mind. Do not fret about being asked to undergo a psychological evaluation or meet with a custody evaluator as part of the process of determining your child’s custody. You can make the legal process of determining custody easier by working with a compassionate family attorney who can represent your interests and explain every step of the custody determination process to you. For legal guidance you can trust, contact The Law Office of Eric B. Hannum Esq., LLC. today at 732-370-9596 to schedule your free legal consultation with our firm. We serve clients in Ocean, Monmouth, Middlesex, Burlington, and Mercer counties.