A vital part of divorce involves the determination of what proportion of the children’s time will be spent with each parent. Ideally, divorcing parents can make this decision themselves or with assistance from their attorneys or a mediator. If the matter winds up going to court, to assist in deciding this issue expert witnesses may be called.

There are two basic issues to deal with when child custody may be an issue that warrants retaining an expert: First, when to retain the expert? Second, whom to retain? Child custody is not an area of law where surprise is necessarily an advantage. On the contrary, the selection of competent experts and a written report submitted to the court and adversary counsel early in a case may actually prevent litigation in the long run.

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