What is a Child Custody Evaluation
A child custody evaluation usually occurs in a divorce action that involves children. In Utah, a child custody evaluation gets ordered at a temporary orders hearing or by motion by either side. One important factor or evidence that gets admitted through the child custody evaluation in your divorce is what is called hearsay evidence. This is evidence that is communicated to the child custody evaluator by the child or children in your divorce. This essentially gives your children a voice in the divorce court proceedings through the evaluator. The difference is that the evaluator in your divorce is going to give a professional opinion as to the best interest of your child or children as it pertains to custody and a parenting plan. This can affect the custody and parent time you have with your child or children in your divorce.
Results from a Child Custody Evaluation
The child custody evaluator will do an evaluation in your Utah divorce and then will meet with both parents (with their divorce lawyers) for what is called a 4-903 conference. This 4-903 conference is really another mediation, but the difference is the evaluator will give their opinion as to what the custody should be and then you will mediate your divorce with your lawyer in a separate room. This mediation can occur at the court house or the law office of one of the divorce attorneys. The purpose is to allow you see what the opinion of the child custody evaluator as it pertains to your children and hopefully that will allow you to settle your divorce as it pertains to custody and parenting time. Sometimes this mediation works and sometimes it fails.
At Arnold & Wadsworth we have divorce lawyers that have experience with child custody evaluations in divorce actions. Call (801) 475-0123 today for a free consultation. Our divorce lawyers will assess your situation to make sure you are considering all angles and opportunities in your divorce action.