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Children, Families and the Law

The Center of Excellence for Children, Families and the Law

The Center of Excellence for Children, Families and the Law (CECFL) recognizes the life-changing decisions that are made when children and families come before Courts. The Center promotes multidisciplinary professional education, training and research to support informed professional practice, effective prevention and intervention, and thoughtful jurisprudence.

The Center focuses on a variety of issues that affect children and families who are involved with the legal system including families in conflict, interpersonal violence, child maltreatment and neglect, divorce, juvenile justice and children with mental and educational disabilities.

The Center is able to provide an array of services, including professional education, training and development, professional consultation to mental health providers, attorneys, judges, custody evaluators, parenting coordinators, court personnel and social service workers; advocacy and advocacy support and research.

Certificate in Child and Family Forensics

The Massachusetts School of Professional Psychology (MSPP) is proud to present a Certificate in Child and Family Forensics including the most comprehensive and intensive course available on Parenting Coordination. Courses can be taken individually or as part of the Certificate in Child and Family Forensics. Each course provides 2 Academic Credits or 28 Continuing Education Credits and is offered in a blended learning format, consisting of a 4-week online course and a required “weekend-in-residence” at the MSPP campus in Newton, MA.

> Click here for more information.

Current Research

A current research project of the Center is looking at the effectiveness of a family camp intervention for families with children in danger of losing a relationship with one parent after divorce.

Contact Us

For information about programs, training, and consultation, please contact Dr. Robin Deutsch at robin_deutsch@mspp.edu.

Robin M. Deutsch, PhD, is the Director of the Center of Excellence for Children, Families and the Law at the Massachusetts School of Professional Psychology (MSPP), and an Associate Clinical Professor of Psychology at Harvard Medical School. She practices as a custody evaluator, mediator, parent coordinator, therapist and consultant. Dr. Deutsch lectures widely throughout North America and Europe on Parenting Coordination, parenting and child development and complex issues related to family conflict, including parent alienation, attachment, abuse and neglect and trauma. She has published extensively on issues related to attachment, alienation, co-parenting after divorce, high conflict divorce, parenting plans and parenting coordination. Dr. Deutsch has performed a wide variety of forensic evaluations and testified in juvenile, family, district and federal courts involving divorce and visitation disputes, relocation, domestic violence, adoption, alienation, abuse and neglect. She provides consultation and expert witness services on boundary violations, ethical issues, child and adolescent development, complex custody issues and custody and parenting evaluations. Dr. Deutsch was a member of the American Psychological Association (APA) task force that developed Guidelines for Parenting Coordinators (2011), the Association of Family and Conciliation Courts (AFCC) Task Force that developed Guidelines for Parenting Coordinators (2006), and the AFCC Task force that developed Guidelines for Court Involved Therapists (2010). She was the former President of the AFCC (2008-2009) and the former Chair of the APA Ethics Committee (2007).

Updated 5/15/13

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