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Harman and Lorandos' false critique of Meier et al.'s family court study

NCJ Number
Date Published
30 pages

The authors present their rebuttal of a critique by Jennifer Harman and Demosthenes Lorandos of their Family Court Outcomes Study, by providing background on the study and its methods; the authors also respond to Harman and Lorandos’ criticisms, in order to demonstrate that the critiques are either incorrect or irrelevant to the reliability of the authors’ findings.


The authors discuss a paper by Jennifer Harman and Demosthenes Lorandos, in which they purport to have identified numerous methodological flaws in the authors’ 2019 study of family court outcomes in cases involving abuse and alienation allegations (“FCO study”). The authors address the claimed lack of public access as evidence that their study is unreliable. This article responds to and refutes Harman and Lorandos’ claims and criticisms of the authors’ study. In addition to pointing out that the claimed lack of information would not be a methodological flaw even if true, the authors explain that Harman and Demosthenes’ other criticisms are speculative, incorrect, or insignificant. The authors appreciate this opportunity to clarify that the important findings of the FCO study are valid and should be taken seriously by the courts and those interested in the fairness and safety of custody decisions when there are allegations of abuse and alienation. Publisher Abstract Provided

Date Published: January 1, 2022