A meta-analytical review of the responses in the MMPI-2/MMPI-2-RF clinical and restructured scales of parents in child custody dispute

  • Laura Redondo Universidade de Vigo
  • Francisca Fariña Universidade de Vigo
  • Dolores Seijo Universidade de Santiago de Compostela
  • Mercedes Novo Universidade de Santiago de Compostela
  • Ramón Arce Universidade de Santiago de Compostela
Keywords: Child custody dispute, MMPI-2, Clinical scales, Restructured scales, Separation, Parental attributes


Parental attribute evaluation in relation to child custody comprises psychological and psychopathology. Additionally, defensiveness must be suspected on this setting. The worldwide reference psychometric measurement instrument for this purpose is the MMPI. With the aim of knowing the responses of parents litigating by child custody, a meta-analytic review of the responses to clinical and restructured scales was performed. A total of 21 primary studies (studies with a simulation design i.e., participants were instructed to answer as parents litigating by child custody were found were disregarded) were found, obtaining 291 effect sizes for clinical scales and 1 for restructured scales. The results showed positive, significant and generalizable mean true effect size in the Hy, Pd and Pa scales; a negative, significant and generalizable in the Ma and Si scales, and non-generalizable in the Pt y Sc scales; and a trivial mean true effect size in the Hs and D scales. Parent gender was studied as a moderator having no found differences between the responses of mothers and fathers. The implications of the results for forensic evaluation practices are discussed.

Author Biographies

Francisca Fariña, Universidade de Vigo

Professor of general psychology and family issues

Departamento AIPSE

Dolores Seijo, Universidade de Santiago de Compostela

Lecturer in social psychology

Psicología Organizacional, Jurídica Forense y Metodología de las Ciencias del Comportamiento.

Mercedes Novo, Universidade de Santiago de Compostela

Lecturer in social psychology

Psicología Organizacional, Jurídica Forense y Metodología de las Ciencias del Comportamiento.

Ramón Arce, Universidade de Santiago de Compostela

Pofessor of forensic psychology

Psicología Organizacional, Jurídica Forense y Metodología de las Ciencias del Comportamiento.


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How to Cite
Redondo, L., Fariña, F., Seijo, D., Novo, M., & Arce, R. (2018). A meta-analytical review of the responses in the MMPI-2/MMPI-2-RF clinical and restructured scales of parents in child custody dispute. Anales De Psicología / Annals of Psychology, 35(1), 156-165. https://doi.org/10.6018/analesps.35.1.338381
Legal and Forensic Psychology