Resetting the Family
An Educational Program for Parents & Children in Conflict
Parental Alienation: Legal and Clinical Considerations
Presenters: Mary Alvarez, PhD and Chris Turner, MSW, JD
MCLE: Applying for 3.5 MCLE credits including 1.0 ethics
There are approximately 4 million children in the U.S. that have been identified as moderately or severely alienated from a parent for unjustified reasons. When taken into consideration that the majority of children are mildly, not moderately or severely, alienated from a parent, the number of children either mildly, moderately, or severely alienated from a parent would be much higher.
One venue for parental alienation to unfold, take root, and escalate in severity is in a high conflict family law case in which custody is in dispute. Whether a first time divorce or a modification, the focus is on the best interests of the child (Texas Family Code §153.002), which leaves ample room for interpretation of exactly what “best interests” really means. It is often in this context that allegations of parental alienation begin (e.g., the child is now afraid of a parent; a parent begins to interfere in custody, possession, and access to ‘protect’ the child) as one parents alleges alienation and one parent alleges that the child is justifiably estranged from the other parent.
In this workshop, the focus will include the following:
1. The science and research findings of parental alienation and how it differs from justified
2. The science and research concerning the neurodevelopmental brain effects on children when
they endure chronic stress, which is what occurs when a parent tries to turn a child against the
3. Why parent alienation/rejection is considered by the research community as child psychological
abuse and domestic violence.
4. The research findings concerning the current and future psychological outcomes for children
who had a parent who engaged in alienation/rejection tactics.
5. Does the Texas Family Code inadvertently create a path for some parents to engage in parental
6. How to manage parental alienation as an attorney in a family law matter whether your client is
the alienator or the target parent.
7. Research-based options for judges when writing orders for these families.
8:00 a.m. Registration begins (coffee & donuts)
8:20 a.m. – Introduction of speakers
8:30 a.m. to 10:15 a.m. – CLE presentation
10:15 a.m. – 10:30 a.m. – Break
10:30 a.m. – 12:30 p.m. – CLE presentation
12:30 p.m. – End of CLE presentation
$100.00 for Brazoria County Bar Association members
$125.00 for non-member (join today to receive valuable member benefits!)