The Court Psychological Clinic is responsible for providing clinical forensic evaluations of children and families to aid the Court in making informed disposition decisions in delinquency and in neglect/abuse cases. The clinic also conducts evaluations in contested domestic cases in order to aid the Court in making decisions regarding custody and parenting time.
The staff consists of full-time and part-time licensed psychologists and contractual consultants who conduct testing and prepare reports for the Court. Staff is available for consultations with attorneys, hearing officers, caseworkers and Friend of the Court family counselors. They also present expert testimony as required.
What to expect
Psychological evaluations usually consist of an interview and the administration of a number of psychological tests. The psychologist doing the evaluation will also review the court file and other documents as appropriate, will speak with individuals familiar with the person being evaluated, and will consult with the caseworker or family counselor assigned to the case.
Evaluations are typically scheduled in half-day blocks of time, and usually take four to five hours. If the child is detained at the Children's Village the evaluation will be done there.
The findings of the psychological evaluation are presented in a written report, a copy of which goes to the judge or referee. The caseworker or caseworkers involved also receive a copy of the report. In domestic cases, the attorneys receive a copy of the report; the plaintiff or defendant can receive a copy of the report if they represent themselves.
In all cases, individuals who have been evaluated can request to meet with the clinician who conducted the evaluation to have the findings of the evaluation explained to them. The psychological reports are confidential documents and the information they contain is considered to be very sensitive.
Release of Psychological Reports
Occasionally schools, treating therapists or other professionals request a copy of the evaluation done by our clinic to aid them in planning for the child or family. Upon receipt of an appropriate release of information, the clinic will send a copy of the report to the professional or agency designated on the release.