As a long-term member of the Parental Alienation Study Group, I am pleased to see that there is going to be an excellent seminar this summer on new developments in the field. See the recent post from Dr. Harman. Dr. Harman is an accomplished and awarded scientist and teacher, and has published many peer-reviewed articles and book chapters, and has presented her research regularly at scientific conferences around the world. Dr. Harman’s areas of research expertise focus on the topic of power in relationships: power in how intimate partners influence each other for good or bad. As an applied social psychologist, her work has applied social psychological theories on intimate relationships to the study of public health problems ranging from STI prevention to domestic violence. For nearly the last decade, her primary focus has been on the study of parental alienation.
Aside from her professional publications, Dr. Harman also writes articles for general audiences, such as The Conversation, and her work is republished on thousands of other news sites (e.g., Associated Press, Raw Story). Her 2016 TEDx talk on parental alienation, has had thousands of views.
Dr. Harman regularly conducts trainings for legal and mental health professionals on parental alienation, and has served as an expert witness and consultant on civil and criminal cases involving parental alienation and other forms of family violence.
Illinois Divorce Lawyer Blog: Top Ways to Spend too much on your Divorce
For the decades that I have been practicing Family Law/Divorce/Child Custody, I have always endeavored to deliver good value for the money spent on legal fees. Aside from keeping my hourly rates at a moderate level so that they are affordable for all clients, I also have some pride in the fact that my Firm really works to manage the cases aggressively and at the same time, cost effectively. With this in mind, I thought I’d post some suggestions on how clients can help keep legal costs down in a contentious divorce:
Illinois Divorce: Parental Alienation Syndrome (PAS)
Parental Alienation Syndrome (PAS)
Parental alienation occurs when efforts are made to discourage a child’s attachment to a parent. This often occurs during acrimonious divorces, when one parent discourages the child/children from having a relationship with the other. Mechanisms often used to alienate the child/children are extremely harmful to children and include the following:
- Slandering the other parent. This involves making deprecating statements about the other parent repetitively. This often includes fabricated information.
Illinois Divorce Lawyer: Dealing with High Conflict Personalities (HCPs)
In my law practice, a number of issues that come up with divorce and child custody matters are focused around a spouse with a High Conflict Personality. HCPs can make a divorce and child custody case difficult to the point of being traumatic, and it is so important to have a lawyer that understands these personality types, and has management strategies for dealing with HCPs in the courtroom. Attorney and HCP expert Bill Eddy offers a podcast on the link below, along with some appropriate advice:
” Here are four of the biggest mistakes when dealing with HCPs:
Trying to give them insight into their own behavior
Illinois Divorce: Why Does Divorce Spike In January?
So what accounts for the post-holiday divorce?
Why Does Divorce Spike In January?
According to experts, the biggest reason that divorces rise following the holidays is a desire for one person in the marriage to start fresh and begin another year with a clean slate.
Illinois Divorce Lawyer: PASG and DSM
One of the longstanding issues in dealing with Parental Alienation within the clinical community, as well as with the legal community, has been the inclusion of Parental Alienation diagnostics in the DSM. An important group (of which I am proud to be a member) is the Parental Alienation Study Group.
Parental Alienation Study Group, Inc. (PASG), is an international, not-for-profit corporation. PASG has 800 members – mostly mental health and legal professionals – from 62 countries.
PASG is an organization open to anyone who reports an interest in the topic of parental alienation—personally, professionally, or both. Membership in PASG does not signify approval of the individual by the PASG Board of Directors, nor does it indicate any special education, training, expertise, or credentialing regarding parental alienation.
Illinois Divorce Lawyer: Malignant Narcissists
What Are the Signs of a Malignant Narcissist?
Malignant narcissists tend to display some of the worst traits of both APD and NPD, and often have severe dysfunctions in their personal relationships, work, and ability to function in other areas of life.
Their reckless behavior, disregard for others, and inability to form lasting healthy relationships with others can make them easier to spot than people with fewer traits or more mild or ‘covert’ forms of narcissism.
Illinois Divorce: A Checklist for Parents to be Supportive of their Kids
For parents anticipating a divorce and child custody (allocation) issues, it’s always useful to go over some checklists, both financial and child-related, to ensure that the needs of the parties and families are met as best as is possible during the pendency of the case. Once a divorce or separation commences, it can be uncomfortable talking with the school or sports teams about the divorce, but it can be helpful and supportive to the minor children when teachers and coaches are aware of possible changes in the child’s behaviors or affect or emotional health.
CHECKLIST FOR DIVORCING AND DIVORCED PARENTS
1. As soon as possible, inform the school of a divorce so that school personnel can be made aware of your child’s emotional support needs.
Illinois Divorce: Retained Earnings
Illinois Divorce Lawyer: What is a Guardian ad Litem?
Most of the cases that we manage at Law Offices of Michael F Roe are complex cases, sometimes involving serious issues with child custody, and often a HCP (High Conflict Personality/Parent). Within these divorce or parentage cases the courts in Illinois follow a pattern of addressing the issues of the best interests of the minor children in terms of where the child(ren) with live primarily, and what allocation of parenting time and decision making will be awarded to each parent. Mediation, while mandatory in Illinois, usually is not effective in these complex cases. More typically, the court will initially appoint a Guardian ad Litem to investigate the circumstances of the parents and the family and give recommendations to the court on allocation of parenting time and decision making.
Practice Pointer: The role of the GAL in a child custody (allocation) case is important, but in my view, it must also be kept in mind that the role of a retained clinician (custody evaluator) is equally significant and important in a complex child custody case. As valuable as GALs are, they do not possess the clinical experience and psychological education as evaluators (most custody evaluators have Ph.Ds in psychology, or the equivalent). Many times, a good GAL in tandem with a good custody evaluator gives the Court the ability to capably assess and evaluate the best interests of children in a complex custody case.
In this article, I discuss the role of a ‘guardian ad litem’ in Illinois.