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What to Expect in a Forensic Evaluation

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In a contested child custody dispute in Queens, NY, the court can order a forensic examination of both parents. In this case, the goal of a forensic examiner is to assist the court in deciding the custodial arrangement that suits the best interest of a child.

If both parents and their local child custody lawyers allow child custody to become an issue, it means they have agreed to place their physical and mental health before a court. As such, a forensic examiner can ask a parent for their medical records if their physical or mental health is at issue following the order of a court.

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If a court orders a forensic evaluation, a parent can expect to:

Talk to a Medical Professional or Social Worker

In a forensic evaluation, the examiner may be a therapist, psychologist, psychiatrist, or certified social worker. These medical professionals and social worker won’t be performing a counseling or therapeutic function. They’ll be making an assessment of an ex-couple’s parenting skills and overall ability to be fit parents.

Meet with the Examiner Several Times

The examiner will want to meet a parent several times alone. They will also want a parent to meet with their child, with the examiner acting as an observer.

During the parent-child meeting, the examiner will observe the interactions of a parent with their kid. They will observe if a parent sets appropriate boundaries during these interactions.

Unlike consultations with child custody lawyers, conversations with forensic evaluators aren’t privileged. Anything a parent says can and will be used against them. With that said, they should focus on the positive aspects of their relationship with their kid.

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