Office for the Prevention of Domestic Violence

Information for Professionals

Mental Health

Using Mental Health Services Information for Domestic Violence victims considering counseling

What’s the difference between therapy and a psychological evaluation?

Therapy and evaluation are two different functions that should be performed by two separate people.

A therapist works for you.

An evaluator usually works for the court.

If you are involved in a custody and visitation case, the court may require you to have a psychological evaluation.  The evaluator’s job is to make an unbiased, objective recommendation to the court.  Don’t expect them to be your advocate.  (You can also hire an evaluator on your own, if you think it would help;  make sure to hire someone who has expertise on domestic violence.)