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Frequently Asked Credentialing Questions

(1) Does the National Certification mean that I can practice in any state in the country?

It means that you have met criteria formulated by experts that represent the national standard for extra qualifications in the field designated. It’s always a good idea to find out if you can practice in a specific state by contacting the licensing bureau in that state. Many times you’ll find that no specific practice regulations are in force and that a simple courtesy letter from you is all that is needed.

(2) What is the PACE Credentialing Center?

The credentialing center responsible for certifying parenting coordinators and custody evaluators nationally is PACE, or The Professional Academy of Custody Experts.


The PACE Credentialing Center is a department within PACE responsible for the management of PACE credentials and specialty certifications. This department is responsible for the Academy Register of Family Court Services, Continuing Education Approval Program, and the Verifications Program.

(3) How many credentials and specialty certifications does PACE offer?

PACE offers two credentials: Nationally Certified Custody Evaluator (NCCE) and Nationally Certified Parenting Coordinator (NCPC).

(4) How long has PACE had credentials and specialty certifications?

PACE has been offering credentials to mental health professionals since1991, starting with the Registered Custody Evaluator. NCCE and NCPC have been offered since March 1, 2010.

(5) Are the PACE credentials and specialty certifications the same as a state license?

PACE specialty certifications provide recognition to those who have met national standards for higher levels of education, experience and knowledge, and are not a substitute for state licenses that may be required by a state in which you plan to offer your services.

A state license is issued to regulate the practice of mental health services and protect the public. A state license is issued by and useful only in the jurisdiction where the holder plans to practice. A PACE credential/specialty certification signifies that the holder has met the higher standards developed nationally in addition to having experience and working with certain populations. A specific state may have additional or different licensing requirements. To find out about a state’s licensing requirements contact the licensing board in that state.

Dr. Carroll is licensed to practice by the Commonwealth of Kentucky.

(6) What is the purpose of a specialty certification?

PACE specialty certifications and other professional credentials provide recognition to those who have met national standards for higher levels of experience and knowledge.

The purpose for a specialty certification is to:

  • Assure the public a minimum level of competency for quality service by certified professionals.

  • Professional recognition through a process which examines demonstrated work competencies.

  • Assure an opportunity for ongoing professional development.

  • Promote professional and ethical practice by enforcing adherence to a Code.

(7) How much does a Custody Evaluation cost?

The fee is $125/hour for the duration of the evaluation. The cost is to be shared, typically, between parents, unless otherwise decided or ordered by the court.

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