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UCCES

Uniform Child Custody Evaluation System

Harry L. Munsinger, JD, PhD, and Kevin W. Karlson, JD, PhD

Purpose:
Gathers data for custody evaluations
Format:
Paper and pencil
Age range:
1 year to 17 years
Time:
Varies
Qualification level:
B
B
A degree from an accredited 4-year college or university in psychology, counseling, speech-language pathology, or a closely related field plus satisfactory completion of coursework in test interpretation, psychometrics and measurement theory, educational statistics, or a closely related area; or license or certification from an agency that requires appropriate training and experience in the ethical and competent use of psychological tests. Close

The UCCES is a uniform custody evaluation procedure for mental health professionals.

  • Provides a comprehensive, systematic method for gathering data and organizing the information necessary to determine a child’s best interest.
  • Allows you to present relevant data in an organized and logical manner and to write logical evaluation reports.
  • Administrative and Data Forms include an initial referral form, forms to record case contacts and notes, consent and authorization forms, a suitability for joint custody form, and a summary chart.
  • Parent Forms include a family and personal history questionnaire, interview and observation forms, a parenting abilities checklist, and an explanation of custody procedures for parents and attorneys.
  • Child Forms include interview forms, an abuse/neglect checklist, forms to describe a child’s adjustment to home and community, and a parent–child “goodness of fit” observation form and checklist.

Twenty-five forms are organized into three categories

1) Administrative and Data Forms—Each of these 10 forms should be completed for each custody evaluation.

  • UCCES Checklist (This form contains a list of all the steps involved in completing a UCCES evaluation. It serves as a time-management and quality control tool; helps to organize, manage, and record all major events; documents all procedures; and verifies that all important steps were taken.
  • Initial Referral Form (This form provides a convenient and systematic way to maintain records of all parties and issues as well as the billing schedule.)
  • Chronological Record of all Case Contacts Form
  • Case Notes Form
  • Consent for Psychological Services to Child(ren) Form
  • Authorization to Release Information Form
  • Suitability for Joint Custody Checklist
  • Collateral Interview Form
  • Consent for Evaluation of Minor(s) Form
  • UCCES Summary Chart (for noting significant entries from other completed forms)

2) Parent Forms—Each of these nine forms should be completed for each parent.

  • Parent's Family/Personal History Questionnaire
  • Parent Interview Form
  • Parenting Abilities Checklist
  • Suitability for Joint Custody Interview
  • Analysis of Response Validity Checklist
  • Behavioral Observations of Parent-Child Interaction Form
  • Home Visit Observation Form
  • Agreement Between Parent and Evaluator Form
  • Explanation of Custody Evaluation Procedures for Parents and Attorneys

3) Child Forms—These six forms should be completed for each child.

  • Child History Questionnaire (one for each parent to complete)
  • Child Interview Form
  • Child Abuse Interview Form
  • Abuse/Neglect Checklist
  • Child's Adjustment to Home and Community Checklist
  • Parent-Child Goodness of Fit Observation Form and Checklist

The Manual presents an overview of child custody evaluation research, discusses the requirements for a comprehensive custody evaluation, describes each of the 25 forms, and provides helpful suggestions for testifying as an expert witness.

Note: Individual UCCES forms are available at $4 each for reordering purposes. Please call 1.800.331.8378 for details.