When parents separate or divorce, decisions need to be made that will have a significant impact on their children. Finding ways to include children’s thoughts and preferences can sometimes be part of the decision making process – referred to as the Voice of the Child.
A Voice of the Child Report can be requested by the courts in a custody and access dispute. A Voice of the Child Report can also occur without a court order, providing all parties consent.
A qualified professional interviews the child and reports back the child’s views on specific issues. This includes the child’s preferred residence, preferred school, his/her views on access and visits, and any additional matters where the child’s opinion needs to be heard.
A Voice of the Child Report does not provide recommendations; it is only intended to clarify the child’s opinions and feelings about issues affecting them. A detailed report is written, and the parents typically use the report to help reach a settlement.