Journal of Law & Family Studies
Divorce custody litigation has been a social success. Despite the continuing complaints of participants-judges, lawyers, social and behavioral experts, the parents-the vast majority of couples who want to terminate their marriages and allocate control and responsibility for their children have been able to accomplish their goals relatively efficiently. And, if the law and government actors have not been terribly successful or efficient in resolving parental custody disputes that the parents' lawyers have not been able to settle, it has not been for lack of trying. Custody litigation is difficult, emotional, and unrewarding, for all participants (even financially, lawyers claim, because of the extraordinary time custody litigation takes). There is no doubt that social and behavioral science experts can be helpful in resolving at least some of the most difficult cases. Yet for all participants modesty in analysis, in prediction, in recommendations, in judicial judgment, must be an essential element of the enterprise.
Robert Levy, Custody Investigations in Divorce-Custody Litigation, 12 J.L. & Fam. Stud. 431 (2010), available at http://scholarship.law.umn.edu/faculty_articles/466.