I should be soon getting the results of my latest batch of psychological tests. The value of these tests is marginal.
The advantage of the tests is that they seem to be an objective measure of the parent's psychological well-being, and such measures are otherwise difficult for the court to judge. There is a substantial body of academic literature on these tests that go back many years. Expert psychologists administer the tests, and they seem scientific and reliable. Of course anything would seem scientific and reliable compared to the factors that the court usually considers in a custody case.
There are a couple of serious flaws with the whole approach. First, the psychological tests are scored purely in terms of correlations. The test administrators have a huge database on the sorts of answers that are given by various sorts of people. The tests have a lot of innocuous questions. There might be a few questions about suicide or something else that might be a direct tipoff to a psychological disorder, but most of them could be answered true or false without implying any mental problem.
The tests are scored by looking at correlations between groups of answers and patterns in the database that are known to be related to particular conditions. For example, maybe depressed people taking the test commonly say that they don't sleep well at night and they worry about stomachaches. (I am just making this up; I have no idea how depressed people would answer these questions.) So if you take the test and you say you don't sleep well at night and you worry about stomachaches, then that might be an unusual combination that would suggest that you suffer from depression. It doesn't prove anything, but it suggests a probability based on statistical data.
So the problem is that the tests don't really diagnose anything. They are mainly just useful as screening devices. If the test suggests that the patient is depressed, then the psychologist still has do interviews and maybe collect other data to make a diagnosis.
The test is a little like security personel looking to see if you match a profile. You are not guilty of anything just because you match a profile, but the security folks will think that there is a probability of a problem that merits further scrutiny.
The second big problem with the tests is that there is virtually no scientific literature relating test results with parenting capacity. The tests were not created for use in family court, and none of the questions involve parenting. Nobody knows what answers correlate with good parenting, and what patterns do not. One could reasonably infer that a high-anxiety suicidal alcoholic schizophrenic might not be a good parent, but the test data don't really measure that.
My hunch is that the tests only produce significant info in less that 5% of the custody cases. I doubt that many schizophrenics get this far in a custody dispute anyway. A test may indicate personality characteristics, such as whether someone is introverted or extroverted, but no one knows whether introverts or extroverts make better parents.
I have a court order for Dr. Inkblot to look for psychological disorders, so that is why he is doing the tests. Why the judge made the order, I don't know. Whether the results will be of any use in the case, remains to be seen.