Five Things You Should Know about a Custody Evaluation

Over the next five weeks, this column will discuss the important things you need to know about participating in custody evaluation before you make an appointment.

  1. The evaluation begins the moment you contact the psychologist’s office.

Most psychologists work in either independent practices or small group businesses. This means that the evaluating psychologist will have a great deal of contact with the office personnel, especially with the office manager. When you call to make your first appointment, understand that it is very likely that the office manager or the administrative assistant will speak with the psychologist about their perception of you.

If you are flexible, polite, and respectful, this will reflect positively on you. If you are insistent and demanding, that also will get back to the psychologist. For example, if you insist that you have a specific appointment time, this indicates that you are not considerate of others and the constrained schedules most people have to manage. By working with the office manager to minimize the inconvenience to both yourself and the examining psychologist, this would be considered a positive impression since it suggests that you would be capable of working in a mediated manner throughout the rest of the custody process.