Are you in the middle of a divorce and wondering if you need a child and family investigator or a parental responsibilities and valuator appointed in your case? Hi, I’m Marie Drake of the Drake law firm. And today I’m going to explain to you a few of the differences between what’s called a CFI and a PRA II. Before I get into the differences between a CFI and a PRA, I want to talk about why you would need one in the first place. And it could be a number of things, there could be accusations floating around of spousal abuse, or God forbid child abuse, or actual police reports that include these things, or perhaps one spouse has substance abuse issues. And you need a third party, someone appointed by the court to investigate this so that you can make decisions based on the facts. A Child and Family investigator is someone who was appointed by the court. Now only one party to the case has to file a motion to appoint a CFI. And it’s almost always granted. In fact, I’ve never seen it not granted in 23 years. So once you know you need a CFI and you file a motion to appoint a CFI. The CFI then has to conduct an investigation. A CFI is typically a family law attorney with some experience. Sometimes though, the CFI can also be a mental health provider can be a therapist or counselor, or it can be an attorney with a therapist or counselor type background. That person will start his or her investigation by meeting with the parties separately in their homes. And also depending on the age of the children, meeting with the children. The CFI will ask a lot of questions. Sometimes there will be questionnaires that need to be filled out and there’ll be basically a pretty thorough investigation of the family situation in each spouse’s home. Once the CFI has gathered all that information, he or she will prepare a report to submit to the court. And I would say north of 90% of the time, the court takes those recommendations, and that becomes a huge chunk of your parenting plan. The cost of the CFI is $2,750. It’s always split between the parties. And it’s sometimes but rarely is an amount that is exceeded by agreement of the parties or court order. It is by far a much cheaper way to go than a PRA, a parental responsibility evaluator and I’ll be talking about that next, a PRA will file a much more extensive report with the court. And it’s usually worth it because the issues are much more complex. When you’re dealing with abuse issues, including substance or god forbid a child abuse issue, then you do need a more thorough investigation and it’s worth it. PRs can cost though upwards of $10,000 and I’ve seen it go north of that, but it’s so often worth it, especially when you’re talking about abuse. Contact the Drake law firm today if you and your spouse are stuck in a parenting plan cycle and can’t get out of it and can’t find resolution we can help you modify it or help you create it depending on where you are in the process and do it in the best interest of your children.
Differences between A Child & Family Investigator (CFI) And Parental Responsibilities Evaluator(PRE)
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