If you feel your child’s parent has significant mental health issues that affect their ability to appropriately parent your children, you may want to discuss with your attorney filing a Motion for Psychological Evaluation.
The basis for the request would be to show the Judge the significant concerns that relate to the opposing party regarding their mental health and their ability to parent, and that a psychological evaluation would assist the court in making an appropriate determination in child custody by having this information from a professional regarding the opposing party’s potential mental health issues available when making such a decision.
Things to Consider when Petitioning the Court for Evaluation
There are a few things to consider when making this request:
- If you make such a motion against the opposing party, expect them to file one asking for you to undergo a psychological evaluation. Do you have any issues that may come to light by undergoing such an evaluation? Is this in any way going to impact your job (such as security clearance issues)?
- Can you afford the evaluation? The court will not absorb the cost of the evaluation. You can ask the judge to make the other party pay for the evaluation, but more than likely they will have each party share in the cost. The cost of the evaluation depends on how in depth the evaluation is. Psychological evaluations can range from $1,500 to $5,000.
- While the evaluation may uncover mental health issues that should be addressed, and the court can then address those issues appropriately in any court order that is issued, the psychological evaluation may also come back reflecting no significant issues. In this way, the evaluation can support the position that the opposing party has no mental health concerns, and perhaps you are the one with unreasonable beliefs or opinions about the party.
What Happens if Your Spouse Requests a Psychologicla Evaluation in Return?
At first blush obtaining a psychological evaluation can seem like a fantastic idea, but when you consider the practical considerations regarding cost and the repercussions of making such a request, it is very important that you discuss such a litigation strategy in detail with your attorney and share any and all concerns you may have regarding the process. Once the process begins, you may withdraw your motion for the opposing party to undergo a psychological evaluation, but if the other party files their own motion for you to undergo a psychological evaluation, you have no way to force them to withdraw the request. You will have to address the matter at the scheduled hearing and convince the judge it is not a worthwhile endeavor, and their motion should be denied.
Contact an Raleigh Family Lawyer to Discuss Your Case
If you are seeking a psychological evaluation for your spouse during your divorce, or have been requested to take an evaluation, contact our team. Our Raleigh legal team can guide you on the best course of action and how to prepare for your case.
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