The attachment network in family law matters: A developmental-contextual approach

Shelley A. Riggs, Michael C. Gottlieb

Research output: Contribution to journalReview articlepeer-review


A developmental-contextual framework recognizes that children continue to develop and change across the life span and are influenced by previous experiences and by their current environment, including the events and people around them.. This model is especially well suited for use in child custody evaluations. In this article, we review developmental considerations relevant to custodial decisions and consider the defining elements of an attachment bond and the organization of children's attachment networks. Recommendations for research follow. We then provide a detailed example illustrating how the model may be used and conclude with practice implications an recommendations.

Original languageEnglish (US)
Pages (from-to)208-236
Number of pages29
JournalJournal of Forensic Psychology Practice
Issue number3
StatePublished - 2009


  • Attachment
  • Child custody
  • Social network

ASJC Scopus subject areas

  • Pathology and Forensic Medicine
  • Applied Psychology


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