According to recent research, nearly 1 in 5 people deal with mental health issues. In many cases, these mental health conditions are manageable with therapies, medications, and self-care strategies.

However, some mental health conditions or circumstances can cause negative consequences for others. If you are going through a divorce, you may believe that your child’s other parent is mentally unfit. 

People who are in this situation can request a psychological evaluation in their child custody case. The courts will use the results of this evaluation to determine the appropriate course of action regarding the custody of the child.

To pursue this type of action, it is a good idea to secure legal counsel. A skilled attorney can work to protect the best interests of you and your child throughout the divorce process.

When to Request a Psychological Evaluation

In most instances, the family courts are required to consider the best interests of the child when making a custody determination. Determining the best interests of the child often requires specific evidence, testimony, and legal argumentation.

One of the key factors in determining the best interests of a child is the mental health of their parents. If a court deems it necessary, they can mandate psychological testing before making a judgment regarding custody orders.

If you believe that your ex-spouse is not fit to care for your child, a family law attorney can help. It will be vital to present evidence to the court to persuade the judge that a psychological evaluation is necessary.

Some arguments that might persuade the courts to order psychological tests include:

  • Evidence of child abuse or neglect
  • A history of alcohol or drug abuse
  • Questionable or inconsistent parenting choices
  • A history of mental health problems or illness

The courts will take these factors into account when deciding whether to mandate psychological testing.

The Role of Psychological Testing in Custody Determinations

If the judge in your custody case decides to order an evaluation, they will carefully review the results. This can help the courts to determine whether both parents are able to provide a safe and healthy environment for the child.

Courts are not required to make specific decisions based on the results of a psychological evaluation. They have the discretion to determine what is in the best interests of the child based on a wide range of factors.

Many psychological issues and conditions can be effectively managed with certain treatments. If a parent is unwilling to treat their mental health problems, the courts may decide not to award them custody.

If you believe that your child’s other parent is mentally unfit, a skilled family law attorney can help you to request an evaluation. It is vital to take action to protect the health and well-being of your child.

You May Be Evaluated, Too

If you decide to request a psychological test related to a custody decision, you may also be required to undergo an evaluation. This helps to ensure that the system is fair. 

Parents should not be able to leverage mental health issues against one another. It is important to be aware that you may also face a psychological evaluation.

If you believe that a psychological test would undermine your custody case, you may want to reconsider. Contact an accomplished attorney to discuss the role of psychological evaluations in your case.

Contact a Family Law Attorney

No matter the situation, hiring a trusted family law attorney will give you the best chance of securing a positive outcome. Custody issues during a divorce can become highly complex. This is especially true when questions of mental fitness arise. Consulting with a legal specialist will help to determine your best path forward.