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The Voice of the Child: Busting Shared Parenting Myths
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The Voice of the Child: Busting Shared Parenting Myths

The SCCBA Family Law Section presents an MCLE Seminar: A workshop sponsored by the Santa Clara County Bar Association Family Law Section, Santa Clara County Psychological Association and the Minor’s Counsel Committee

When: November 14, 2014
8:30 AM - 4:45 PM
Where: Santa Clara Biltmore Hotel
2151 Laurelwood Rd.
Santa Clara, California  95054
United States
Presenter: see below
Contact: SCCBA

Online registration is closed.
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Busting Shared Parenting Myths

Decision Trees in Evaluations & Interventions

With a Special Update from the AFCC International Task Force on Shared Parenting 


  • “Joint Custody” means each parent has exactly the same amount of time with the kids.  It’s 50/50 and that’s only fair!
  • A Brief Focused Assessment is just a mini custody evaluation.
  • Reconnection therapy is always an appropriate intervention for families where there is contact resistance.
  • Co-parent counseling can begin anytime in a family’s “legal life cycle.”  It doesn’t matter if they’re in the middle of litigation.  


These are some of the myths about Shared Parenting (also known as joint custody) that will be discussed and debunked at this full-day workshop.  Inspired by the consensus-building work of the AFCC Think Tank on Shared Parenting, we’ll spend the day examining the latest research about parental involvement, young children’s overnights, and domestic violence and apply the findings to creating workable shared parenting plans.  

The day begins with the keynote presentation by Nancy Olesen, Ph.D. Dr. Olesen will be discussing the factors that facilitate or impede shared parenting.  She’ll also demonstrate the use of Evidenced-Based Decision Trees to minimize bias and achieve thoughtful, thorough, and transparent evaluations.  



Nancy Olesen, Ph.D.
Dr. Olesen is clinician and evaluator in private practice in Marin County, California. She has worked with divorcing families for more than 20 years and completed hundreds of child custody and dependency court evaluations. Dr. Olesen has also provided expert testimony in child custody cases both in California and other sttes. She has taught many courses for professionals in the best practices in child custody evaluaton in California, throughout the US, in Europe, and in Asia. She has presented numerous times at AFCC conferences on topics such as child abuse, alienation, domestic violence, and attachment. She has published extensively in books and journals. Her latest book is Parenting Plan & Child Custody Evaluations: Using Decision Trees to Increast Evaluator Competence & Avoid Preventable Errors.


We’ll be joined by the Honorable Susan Bernardini, Mary Ann Grilli, and Mary Greenwood, with Kimberly Nielsen, Interim Director of Family Court Services, and Bradford Baugh, Esq., for an update about innovative programs in Santa Clara County family courts and the implementation of Rule of Court 5.250, aka “The Voice of the Child.”

The afternoon features two multidisciplinary panels about evaluations and therapeutic interventions for families in conflict.   Both afternoon panels will draw upon the work of the AFCC Think Tank on Shared Parenting, which brought together an international group of family law practitioners, policy makers, social science researchers, and legal scholars to wrestle with some of the most challenging issues in the practice of custody law.   


Participants will be able to:

  • Identify the empirical evidence (quantitative and qualitative) regarding the factors that impede and facilitate shared parenting.
  • Apply an Evidence-Based Decision Tree for optimal parenting decision-making and residential parenting arrangements post separation and divorce.  
  • Identify the changed roles of minors counsel in the current times of limited court resources.
  • Identify three of the innovative Alternative Dispute Resolution (ADR) projects underway in SCC Family Court.
  • Identify two situations where BFA’s are not appropriate.
  • Discuss options when the mental health practitioner receives a court order which varies from the standard of care.
  • Discuss when reconnection therapy and coparent counseling are appropriate interventions.  

Pricing: (Includes breakfast, lunch and snack) 
SCCBA Member: $220
Non-Member: $280
SCCBA New Admittee:
 (0-3 years in practice)
Honorary: $99
Registration & breakfast: 7:30 - 8:30AM
PROGRAM: 8:30am -  4:45pm

click here for full agenda & Speaker BIOS
6.5 General Substantive Law, 6.5 Family Law Specialization


Nancy Olesen, Ph.D. 



Honorable Susan Bernardini, Supervising Judge, Superior Court of California, County of Santa Clara, Family Division

Honorable L. Michael ClarkSuperior Court of California, County of Santa Clara, Family Division   


Honorable Mary Greenwood, Superior Court of California, County of Santa Clara, Family Division


Honorable Mary Ann Grilli, Superior Court of California, County of Santa Clara, Family Division


Jonee Donnelly, LMFT


Tracy Fleming, MFT, Senior Mediator, Santa Clara County Family Court Services


Ellen Cirigliano Mauldin, MFT


Stephen Newton, Ph.D., Clinical Psychologist, Forensic Specialist


Kimberly Nielsen, MFT, Interim Director, Family Court Services, Santa Clara County


Stephen Penn, JD, Certified Family Law Specialist 



Bradford Baugh, Esq. 

Stephen Penn, JD, Certified Family Law Specialist 




Cancellations and refunds will be accepted only 48 hours prior to the event. If registration is cancelled by  10/31/14, a refund of the cost of registration, minus a $25 processing fee will be issued. If cancellation occurs after 10/31/14, a refund minus a $75 processing fee will be issued.

*All seminar materials will be distributed to pre-registrants via email. We will not provide hard copies. If you would like a hard copy of the materials we will provide upon request for a fee o
f $25.00.  


*State Bar of California Approved MCLE: The Santa Clara County Bar Association is a State Bar of California approved MCLE provider.   This program is approved for California MCLE credit.

Honorable Mary Ann GrilliSuperior Court of California, County of Santa Clara, Family Division 

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