Assessing the needs of young children is one of the more challenging issues for family law professionals. This presentation will focus on what child development concepts and research can inform negotiations, recommendations, decisions and court orders when parenting time for young children is being considered. In the past, two positions were proposed that appeared to be at odds with each other: the primary attachment of the child (usually to the mother) and the importance of the father in the child’s life. We will look at how to utilize a “both/and” perspective in supporting children developing and maintaining secure attachments, using a wider lens than just the parent-child attachment to inform our practice, and accounting for evolving relationships and contexts in the life of the young child.
- Participants will be able to utilize concepts of attachment in temperament in assessing a child’s needs in setting a parenting time schedule.
- Participants will be able to apply a framework of child, parent and family factors to establishing a parenting time schedule.
- Participants will be able to apply a framework for step-ups in parent-child contact schedules.