Psychological Affiliates Inc delivers Orlando patients state of the art Psychologists services. Our experts specialize in Family Counseling, Psychology and Collaborative Divorce Psychology.
In late October, a man by the name of Bryan Santana was accused of murdering his female roommate, Shelby Fazio, 23, and her pit bull, stealing her car and checkbook and attempting to kill a second roommate with a knife. Due to Santana's actions in his cell right before his trial, Judge Renee Roche ordered a mental examination. Our very own Jacquelyn Olander, a licensed psychologist here at Psychological Affiliates, was selected by the state to examine Santana's mental state. Dr. Olander told the judge that he was competent and she believed he was faking a mental illness, multiple personality disorder, to avoid the trial. Judge Roche found the psychologist's testimony credible, and ordered Santana's trial to begin.
In 2008, the Florida Statute was changed to require all divorcing parents with minors, or children under the age of eighteen, to develop parenting plans. This requirement was implemented with the best interest for the child(ren) kept in mind. The parenting plan truly makes the parents plan out every part of the child(ren)’s custody, from their daily tasks to who will be responsible for their healthcare. A key component of the parenting plan is the time-sharing schedule—how much time is allowed for each parent. These factors, plus many more, can be difficult to negotiate and finally agree on. When negotiations are not being handled politely or reasonably, our office can provide your Orlando parenting plan evaluations.
Parents who are divorcing and are unable to reach an agreement upon the parenting plan often turn to the courts to provide assistance with resolution. The courts can appoint a parenting plan evaluator who assesses the whole situation to provide the judge with a better understanding of each parent. The evaluator aims to understand the strengths and weaknesses of each parent, the relationships they have with their child(ren), and if other issues, such as child abuse, substance abuse, or mental illness are present. These issues, however difficult they may be, can be addressed during this process. After all of this data is collected, the Orlando psychologist will create a plan with the appropriate recommendations for the situation that are in the best interest of the child(ren).
In collaborative law, a couple wishing to divorce works with their lawyers, and often, their psychologists, in order to settle the matter out of court. This kind of law is much cleaner than taking a divorce to trial, where often both the spouses and their lawyers will turn towards malicious in-fighting and dirty tactics in order to get the judge to rule in their favor. In this method of divorce, the lawyers and the spouses can work together to find a settlement that is amenable not just for each other, but also for the children and for the property. Though the negotiations can go on for days or even months, studies show that divorces out of court tend to be more amicable and any children from the marriage are better adjusted.
Psychologist are not only brought in in order to evaluate a child who might be having a difficult time with his parents’ divorce, he is also brought in to assess the mental states of the parents, and to determine if it is safe for the child to be placed with either parent. They may also be consulted in order to determine the relative worth of items which are being divided. There is rarely only monetary value involved in divorce disputes, and often a psychologist can clear the air and help the couple reach a more peaceful agreement, one based on facts, rather than on emotions.