With the new versions of Alberta’s Family Practice Note’s 7 and 8 effective May 1, 2019, it is important to review what effect this may have on Parenting Experts.
Practice Note 7 Interventions are conducted by Parenting Experts who carry out either an Evaluative Intervention (to provide information to the Court in order to assist with decision making) or Therapeutic Intervention (to work towards resolution of disputes, conflict and making changes in existing family dynamics). The Parenting Expert cannot conduct both types of interventions for the same family but can carry out multiple therapeutic interventions. The Parenting Expert who performs a Practice Note 7 Intervention can also not additionally perform a Practice Note 8 Child Custody/Parenting Evaluation for the same family, you will need a different Parenting Expert to conduct same.
If parties decide that a Practice Note 7 Intervention is right for them, they can also access this service voluntarily or through counsel for the parties, without Court involvement. One of the first steps will be selecting who the Parenting Expert will be to conduct the Evaluative or Therapeutic Intervention.
Parenting Experts under Practice Note 7 are registered psychologists or registered social workers “with a combination of education, training, experience and continuing learning such that the Parenting Expert qualifies as an expert witness”. The Parenting Expert is a friend of the Court.
As recently modified, social workers who have previously qualified as Parenting Experts under the old Practice Note, and have conducted Practice Note 7 Interventions prior to the May 1, 2019 effective date, are grandfathered into the new Practice Note and may continue to accept Practice Note 7 referrals.