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Guidelines for Brief Focused Assessment: AFCC Task Force on Brief Focused Assessments.

With an Introduction by: Linda Cavallero and Susan E. Hanks, Task Force Chairs




The Association of Family and Conciliations Courts (AFCC) Task on Brief Focused Assessment was convened in 2007 to study the issues inherent in the use of brief focused assessment models in family courts. The resultant “Guidelines for Brief Focused Assessment” were approved by the AFCC Board of Directors in 2009 and are presented here to prompt discussion and further dialogue about this clearly needed practice.

Key Points for the Family Court Community

  • Issue-specific assessments are increasingly requested by family court judges
  • Practice guidelines for clinicians conducting brief focused assessments (BFAs)
  • Types of issues/questions appropriate for BFAs
  • Advantages and pitfalls of BFAs
  • Comparison of BFAs and comprehensive child custody evaluations