About the Author

Diana Shepherd, CDFA®

Diana Shepherd has over 30 years of experience as a marketing, branding, SEO, copywriting, editing, and publishing expert. As Content Director for Family Lawyer Magazine, Divorce Magazine, and Divorce Marketing Group, she oversees all corporate content development and frequently creates SEO-friendly videos, podcasts, and copy for family law and financial firms. The Co-Founder of Divorce Magazine and Divorce Marketing Group, Diana is an award-winning editor, published author, and a nationally recognized expert on divorce, remarriage, finance, and stepfamily issues. She has written hundreds of articles geared towards both family law professionals and divorcing people, and she has both performed and taught on-page SEO for 20+ years. Diana spent eight years as the Marketing Director for the Institute for Divorce Financial Analysts® (IDFA®), and she has been a Certified Divorce Financial Analyst® since 2006. While at IDFA, she wrote, designed, and published The IDFA Marketing Guide, and she also created seminars for CDFA professionals to present to family lawyers (approved for CLE), as well as to separated and divorcing individuals. She has represented both DMG and IDFA at industry conferences and events across North America, and she has given marketing as well as divorce financial seminars at many of those conferences.


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    Bill Parker

    I am interested in the same or similar approach taken up in Ontario Canada

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      Diana Shepherd, CDFA

      Diana Shepherd

      Hi Bill. There are programs like this in Ontario. If you Google “reunification therapy Ontario” or “reunification counselling Ontario”, you’ll find a number of options. I have no personal experience with any of them, so couldn’t offer any guidance as to “the best” programs, but perhaps a lawyer near you with experience handling parental alienation cases could offer some boots-on-the-ground insight.

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    Thank you so much for the valuable article. I’m sure you know, but it often goes unrecognized, that judges and lawyers also play a part in PA. I’ve been repeatedly put off from enforcing visitation orders for months bc I couldn’t pay thousands to GAL and ex’s attorney and court would not find me indigent. In 2013, judge literally (in writing) cancelled final hearing bc I owed GAL fees. Its never been rescheduled.

    When we got a new judge she said we needed updated GAL recommendation before she would enforce placement order then refused to order GAL to start until I paid him what I owed and paid a hefty deposit. She put it in the order and said he was to stop work when he used up the money. The GAL, the guy who’s supposed to be representing the best interest of my daughter, is told not to do his job unless he’s paid upfront.

    We’ve had recommendations for placement by two expert witnesses (court also ordered them not to start until they were paid in advance creating more delay) and two stipulated placement orders. In spite of zero claims of abuse, neglect or abandonment of my daughter, I haven’t seen my daughter in over 5 years. The last two have been under this judge repeatedly putting me off and kicking the can. And the GAL dragging his feet even after he was paid. When this case started it took him 4 months to decide he needed an expert witness and no placement was happening that whole time. His failure to provide the court with a receipt, despite my repeated requests and affidavit to the court, held up a court order causing 2 more months of delays. Couple weeks before our latest hearing on placement GAL announces his latest expert witness can’t attend so the hearing is rescheduled, another 57 day delay and again no visitation this whole time.

    Judge gave the latest expert witness (my ex’s friend, neighbor and former counselor) 3 months to complete here assessment and she took the full 3 months to the day. Now they say that its been so long it would be somehow harmful for my 10 year old daughter to see me. They say no reunification is to be attempted. Again, no claims of abuse or neglect of my daughter. Visitation reports tell how well me and my daughter get a long and how reluctant she was to leave at the end. Nothing has changed since our stipulated placement agreements except that my ex and the court has kept me from my daughter.

    I have never gone away and I have never stopped fighting and although I’ve only asked for one thing, to see my daughter, now they want to call me a serial litigator because I won’t go away.


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