What is an assessment? Why would I want one?

5. The judge looks at the report

The judge uses the report at your to try to help you and your partner agree on , , and parenting arrangements. Decision-making responsibility and parenting time used to be called and .

A judge looks at the facts of your situation and the test to make decisions about decision-making responsibility and parenting time. Judges usually assume it’s better for a child to have a relationship with both parents after they separate or .

Some of the things a judge looks at are:

  • the child’s physical, emotional, and psychological safety, security, and well-being
  • the relationship between each parent and the child
  • how long the child has lived in a stable situation
  • each parent’s plan to care for and raise the child
  • the child’s views and wishes, unless there’s no way to find out what they are
  • if there’s been abuse against any family member or any child

The judge doesn’t look at the past behaviour of a parent unless it affects their ability to parent. For example, a judge won’t consider which parent was responsible for breaking up the family. But the judge must consider if a parent was ever violent or abusive towards the other parent or children.

The judge also looks at:

  • any evidence that is presented in the hearing
  • what you and your partner want
  • what the OCL report recommends
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