In contested or complex California Child Custody proceedings, mediation or Child Custody Recommending Counseling may be insufficient to resolve the issues. In these circumstances, the court can order a 3111 custody evaluation.

In California family law cases, a 3111 custody evaluation will cost anywhere from $1,500 to $20,000 and possibly even more. The cost comes from having to pay the private mediator handling the evaluation. The court typically requires the requesting party to advance the cost, subject to the court’s right to later reallocate the cost reimbursement. The court may also order one party to pay for the Evaluation outright or order the costs to be split.

A 3111 custody evaluation, even though expensive, can be helpful in addressing difficult custody cases. The 3111 custody evaluator will spend this time working to each of the custody issues involved in the case. This process may take months or potentially longer to complete, but a much more thorough job can be done.

The custody evaluator will meet with both parties, the children (Depending on their age), contact collateral witnesses, and read through documents provided, and potentially make home visits to observe each parent’s interaction with the child and gain a greater appreciation for each parent’s relationship with the children. In cases where one parent wants to move the child away to another area, the 3111 process will be even more complicated so that a decision reflecting the children’s best interests is reached.

In all cases the 3111 evaluator will prepare a thorough recommendation that contains their analysis of the children’s best interests. The court does retain ultimate decision making power concerning the adoption of any of the reports. If either party is unhappy with the report’s conclusions, they can still request a trial to challenge the report.

If you are a father in Orange, Riverside or San Bernardino and have be ordered to complete a 3111 Evaluation or are considering a request to complete a 3111 Evaluation, call “The Fathers Rights Attorney” today to set up a consultation.