Forensic Evaluations/ Social Studies

 
 

When a dispute occurs in the legal system over issues such as custody, possession, access or relocation, it may be necessary to employ a neutral third-party Forensic Evaluator or Social Study Investigator.  

As a Social Study Investigator, Robin Brown Walton is either appointed by the Court and/or agreed to by the attorneys in the case.  She interviews all the parties involved in the case and investigates the concerns presented to her.  She will conduct home visits, communicate with collaterals and references and review paperwork completed during the process.

Following this study, she may choose to meet with the disputing parties to see if there is a possibility of their resolving their custody and possession issue, if approved by their attorneys.  If the parties are able to work through this difficult and challenging issue, Robin believes that it sets up a foundation for a successful co-parenting relationship that will ongoingly serve their children.  If the parties are unable to resolve their custody dispute in a settlement conference and/or Robin does not believe it is appropriate to have this meeting in a case, she will make recommendations to the attorneys and/or the Court, informing them of her findings and communicating her conclusions about how to best meet the interests and needs of the minor children. 

As a Forensic Evaluator, Robin may meet with one party in a disputing case and be asked to interview the minor children so that their voice can be heard.  In these cases, as in all cases, Robin sees herself as the child’s advocate and will only provide information to the Court as to the children’s desires and wishes, as well as information she has acquired through Forensic Interviews.   In her role as the child’s advocate and voice, Robin will make no recommendations to custody and possession.