The Role of Psychologists and Psychiatrists
Which Parent Can Meet the Child’s Needs?
Psychological Evaluations in Custody Determination
In cases of contested child custody, psychologists and psychiatrists may be involved to help determine whether one parent is mentally unfit or to gauge which parent is best suited to meet the unique needs of the child.
Treneff Cozza Law, LLC provides experienced representation for psychological evaluations of parents and children in the context of custody evaluation. We represent either parent in (a) initial determination of child custody or (b) modifications of custody orders, such as petitions for sole custody.
Based in Westerville, we serve clients in the Columbus area and surrounding central Ohio. Attorney Craig Treneff and attorney Andrea Cozza bring years of experience and exclusive focus in family law. Arrange a consultation today to discuss any aspect of divorce, custody or modifications.
The Role of Psychologists and Psychiatrists in Custody Evaluation
If there is a question of who should have primary custody, or a concern about the other parent’s mental condition, we can file motions for evaluation of the other parent. In most cases, the court will require a psychological profile of both parties to render a fair decision.
A psychologist or psychiatrist will conduct a clinical interview with each parent and may administer an in-depth psychological test known as the Minnesota Multiphasic Inventory (MMPI II). This tool is an excellent diagnostic technique for identifying any red flag issues. The court may also conduct an evaluation of the child, too.
Evaluations are most commonly ordered when a mental condition is at issue, such as drug or alcohol abuse, bipolar disorder or severe depression. If the child has special needs (for example, Down syndrome or Asperger’s/autism), the court wants to know which parent is best suited for that care.
As your lawyer, our role is make sure the court is aware of pertinent facts and studies, and to ensure that a psychological/psychiatric custody evaluation is properly determined and that it follows the stated purpose.