My husband and I are in a custody battle with his ex. So far we have already been awarded jurisdiction in Colorado to change the old parenting plan they filed in 2012 and were both living in Virginia (military). Since 2012 we have all separated from the military, but she has moved 5 times to 5 different states, and lived with 3 family members (never having her own place) and is currently living in Ohio with her father. She made a huge motion two weeks ago asking that she become the primary residential parent, even though the kids have lived with us since Nov 2013 (attend school, extracurriculars, medical, etc.) She also wrote a 10 page story with almost all lies about how we parent/treat her. She has no documentation to support her allegations. We responded to each item she put forth, and provided documents to prove our story. We also filed our own motion to remain the primary parent, be awarded child support costs (since she has never paid any) and to have a new parenting plan written to lay out all the responsibilities, visitation, etc. since the old plan is no longer valid and hasn't been followed in years. Now our lawyer wants us to pay $5K for a PRE as well.
This is the type of question that I believe requires a consultation with an attorney.
This is a general answer based on an anonymous question with limited facts and/or information and IS NOT legal advice. It should not be interpreted to be legal advice. This answer does not create an attorney-client relationship.
I would also agree that this type of question requires a consultation. Generally, your current attorney is in the best position to give you strategic advice. If you like and trust your attorney and they are doing a good job for you then I would follow their advice. If you are having questions then you can always consult with other attorneys similar to getting a second opinion form a doctor. Best of luck to you and your family.
I'm not sure why you think the evaluation of a group of strangers on the internet will be better then the information you received from your own attorney. If your attorney believes that a PRE will be useful, then you need to take that into account.
No one can predict in advance the outcome of your hearing. You need to talk to your attorney and then decide whether you are confident enough to disregard his or her advice. There is no way to know if you have 'enough on your side' until you hear the judge's ruling.
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Spending $5K to get an evaluation going js likely money well spent. Realistically you could spend more on an attorney preparing to prove all the evidence. Furthermore, an evaluator can and should look at all the relevant facts and circumstances and will also have the ability to expresses wishes and concerns of the children that would otherwise be hearsay and not heard by the court. Courts will generally follow an evaluator's recommendations. Generally having a PRE can be a great tool and may ultimately cut down on litigation costs. Of course that depends on the rationality of the other attorney and the other party.
The bigger concern in your question ties into the "doesn't seem very reputable." Most attorneys propose people they believe will be a good fit for your case and with whom they are familiar. If "reputable" is determined based on internet reviews of the PRE, keep in mind that one side to an investigation will almost always be unhappy. That is the person who will put up the review. This is not to say that there are not some bad PRE's out there.
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