A parental consultant (PC) is a figure that both parents will agree upon, who is then appointed by a judge. The PC will provide expert opinion, and assist in resolving parenting issues that arise.
Another similar individual used in cases is a parenting time expeditor. These individuals are court authorities and are to be treated like a judge, which means their decisions carry the same weight as a court order. They only make decisions related to parenting time. Unlike parenting time expeditors, parenting consultants are allowed to resolve any parenting issue brought forth by the parents.
THE DECISION-MAKING PROCESS
The parenting consultant will issue a contract-based agreement with the parents, and allow them to mediate a dispute. If mediation fails, the PC will step in and decide the issue. Parents will have to accept the consultant’s decision, unless they want to go to court and have the decision changed. The key benefit in hiring a consultant are quick and fair decisions. The consultant is meant to be productive, and act as a buffer between parents.
PARENTING CONSULTANT FEES
In Minnesota, a common rate for a parental consultant is around $200 per hour. PC’s can be quite expensive, and the parties are each expected to pay half the cost for the consultant. However, consultants are easily reachable, and can make quick decisions over the phone – which can’t be said about judges.