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State of Montana Family Evaluator I in Kalispell, Montana

SPECIAL INFORMATION: * The successful applicant will be subject to a criminal background check, including the Child Protection Services. * An employee new to the Judicial Branch will serve a one-year probationary period. Nature of Work: This is professional human services, social work and/or criminal justice investigator in family-law related cases as mandated by the district court. Work includes a detailed investigation and research performing criminal background checks and present legal history status as well as additional investigation and research to assist in assessing needs and best interests of children in divorce cases, aiding in reducing parental conflict, assisting in negotiating and developing an appropriate interim and long-term parenting plan, determining and making necessary referrals, and preparing reports of findings and recommendations to the court. MUST testify in Court as to investigation and evaluation. The nature of cases includes, but is not limited to, parenting plan disputes, parent and grandparent access, and underage marriage applicants. Work is performed with considerable independent judgment, discretion, and decision making. Work is performed under the general supervision of a professional supervisor and in accordance with court orders, professional social worker practices and procedures, and Title 40, 41, and 42 of the Montana Code Annotated. Work is evaluated through meetings, reports, and annual review of performance for the quality of services provided to clients and the thoroughness of reports prepared. Essential Functions: *(Any one position may not include all of the duties listed, nor do the examples cover all the duties which may be performed) * Extended investigation of all felonies and other such misdemeanors that a person may have on their record via computer and interaction with local law enforcement and any other entities that may have knowledge regarding a person’s criminal behavior as well as follow up and current status. * Reviews questionnaires and references submitted on behalf of the parties; assesses the need for additional information; obtains information from several agencies or professionals; conducts in-depth investigations of backgrounds of clients and all parties involved; conducts comprehensive interviews and determines need for and makes referrals to community and state agencies; follows up on cases with agencies. * Conducts home visits/parent-child observations to observe interactions of parents and children; meets with the parties jointly when necessary. * Reviews information and prepares a report to the court with recommendations for a parenting plan and/or counseling, parenting classes, or treatment regarding areas of concern. * Prepares correspondence. * Attends settlement conferences and confers with attorneys; attends meetings of community social agencies. * Coordinates case management after parenting plan is finalized; guides the implementation of the parenting plan by working with the parents to resolve misunderstandings; conducts dispute resolution sessions to help the parties reach consensus; assists the parties in any mutually agreed modification of the original parenting plan. * Works with couples who have applied for conciliation under Montana’s conciliation law; prepares a report to the court with findings and recommendations. * Meets with underage marriage applicants to determine whether the underage person or persons have the ability to take on the responsibilities of marriage; prepares a report to the court with findings and recommendations. * Researches new referrals at district court and files copied information in files; supervises visitations as necessary or refers parties to qualified supervisors in cases where supervision is ordered. * Records development of investigations and maintains files. *Working Conditions: The work is performed primarily in an office environment and involves exposure to normal, everyday risks which require normal safety precautions typical of offices. Work may subject the employee to verbal abuse and physical harm from irate or highly emotional parents, children, friends, or relatives of clients. Work requires to some extent visiting homes in the Flathead County area. Physical Demands: This position requires activities such as sitting for long periods, standing, bending, stooping, reaching, climbing stairs, lifting, moving and carrying light to medium objects, and operating office equipment. Knowledge, Abilities and Skills: Considerable knowledge of the methods of gathering social and criminal histories and related information, conducting comprehensive interviews, investigating, researching, and assessing information, and preparing findings and recommendations. Must have the ability to cultivate networks and meticulously collect, and continue to work diligently on a case, testify in court using information that has been thoroughly and meticulously collected and evaluated, must have tenacity and be detail-oriented, willing to persist in the investigation. Considerable knowledge of effective written and verbal communication techniques. Exceptionally cognizant of an individual’s rights and issues of privacy and confidentiality. Considerable knowledge of the principles, methods, and practices of social work including child development, domestic abuse, child abuse, sexual abuse, addictions, mental illness, divorce issues, and family dynamics. Considerable knowledge of community resources for children, parents and families. Ability to apply the principles, methods, and practices of social work including child development, domestic abuse, child abuse, sexual abuse, addictions, mental illness, divorce issues, and family dynamics. Ability to accurately document contacts/observations and enter into database. Ability to organize time and effectively manage workload. Ability to gather social histories and related information, conduct comprehensive interviews, assessing information, and preparing findings and recommendations. Ability to establish and maintain effective working relationships with the district court judges and staff; private and state human service agencies; professional groups; and the public. Ability to maintain the confidentiality of information. Ability to be perceptive, versatile, flexible yet firm and matter of fact when necessary. Ability to communicate effectively verbally and in writing. Ability to deal with upset, angry, and emotionally charged people and resolve conflicts. Qualifications: * The minimum qualifications are a bachelor’s degree in human services or related field and one-year of social service/criminal justice experienceoran equivalent combination of education, training and/or experience. Experience mediating in domestic relations, conflict resolution, and report preparation is preferred. *Licensure and Certification Requirements: Possession of or ability to obtain a valid Montana driver's license; proof of insurance if using a personal vehicle on State business. Job: Community/Social Services* *Title: *Family Evaluator I Location: Kalispell Requisition ID: 21141166

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