When parents are unable to reach an agreement regarding custody and/or placement on their own or through mediation, the court may need to address the dispute. The court has the option to order the parents to undergo a custody study with the Office of Family Court Services when this occurs.
A custody study is an in-depth investigation into the family system. This investigation is conducted by one or two mediators over the course of a 90-day timeframe (variations may apply). The end result is a written report and recommendation for custody and placement that is submitted to the court.
Unlike mediation, where a parent can voluntarily contact the Office of Family Court Services to become involved in the program, only a court can order a custody study. If you wish to know more about this process, you may refer to the 'Custody Study Information Packet' listed in the forms section of this website.
If you have been ordered to undergo a custody study, you will be mailed a 'Custody Study Questionnaire' that may also be found in the forms section of this website.