What is a social investigation?

If parents are unable to agree on a parenting plan, the court may order or request the parties to obtain a social investigation conducted by a qualified mental health professional. A social investigation is a comprehensive study of all pertinent details relating to the child(ren) and each parent. The person conducting the social investigation will furnish the court and all parties of record in the proceeding a written report containing recommendations concerning timesharing, decision-making, residence, or other family law matters, as ordered by the court or requested by the parties.
The report will include a written statement of the facts on which the recommendations are based. The social investigator will actually prepare a recommended parenting plan that addresses the parents’ decision making authority and contains specific time-sharing schedules for the court’s consideration.