Child Custodyrefers to the legal right and responsibility to raise a minor child and to make decisions. The parent a child normally lives with, and the one who makes legal decisions concerning the child, is called the custodial parent, usually the mother. Though every state has laws which forbid discrimination based on gender, these are often ignored in the world of family courtrooms across America.
April is Parental Alienation Awareness Month so I thought this would be a perfect opportunity to discuss 10 facts about parental alienation. (Also, read my related column "Parental Alienation Awareness Month.")
Dr. Amy Baker is a highly respected researcher in the field of parental alienation and the author of the seminal book "Adult Children of Parental Alienation Syndrome."
She previously was interviewed on DadsDivorce.com about the long-term effects parental alienation has on children as they grow older. (Note: If parental alienation is evident in your divorce case, contact the divorce lawyers for men at the Cordell & Cordell Law Firm for information on fighting for your rights.)
Baker shared 10 facts about parental alienation she discovered in her research:
Shared parenting legislation is making its mark across the country with at least half a dozen states considering bills that would implement equal parenting in child custody cases.
One reason for the increased awareness is Dr. Linda Nielsen’s report "Shared Parenting: A Review of the Support Research." Nielsen is a nationally recognized expert on father-daughter relationships, president of the American Coalition for Fathers and Children, and professor of women's studies at Wake Forest University. She was also featured on DadsDivorce.com for her interview on father-daughter relationships.
Nielsen examined dozens of studies to highlight the benefits of shared parenting where children live a minimum of one-third of the time with each parent.
A recent Huffington Post column focused on a 2010 study by Jacob Cheadle, Paul Amato and Valerie King on how involved non-custodial fathers were with their children post-divorce.
Perhaps not surprisingly, the "Patterns of Nonresident Father Contact" research study found that physical distance between a father and child is the biggest determining factor in the amount of contact between them.
As more and more fathers are becoming stay-at-home dads, many have questions about dads rights and if theirs are the same as stay-at-home moms.
Typically, the mom who stayed at home during the marriage receives primary custody of the children along with child support and alimony after a divorce in order to continue living the lifestyle she was accustomed to.
But with the new era of stay-at-home fatherhood, is it any different for a stay-at-home dad?
Many men, including the Cordell & Cordell Law Firm attorneys, are applauding changes to Pennsylvania’s child custody laws marking a significant step toward making both the mother and the father equal in the eyes of family court judges.
Notably, for its relevance to fathers, the new statute finally has a gender-neutral requirement stating, “The court shall be gender neutral in making a determination (of custody). No party shall receive preference based solely upon gender in any award granted.”
With the new law now in effect, Pennsylvania judges are also now required to state on the record their reasons for custody decisions. Previously, fathers were left in the dark as to a judge’s reasoning behind the custody determination, which usually came at the detriment of the father/non-custodial parent.
Fathers & Families is a national organization committed to family court reform at the political level. The group’s wide-ranging and ambitious legislative agenda for 2011 is aimed at providing more men’s and father’s rights in family law cases.
One bill that is being introduced in the California legislature would give the courts statutory power to enforce visitation orders, something that should have been done decades ago.
When a child is involved in an international parental kidnapping dispute, the non-offending parent should look to the Hague Convention for guidance.
The Hague Convention on the Civil Aspects of International Child Abduction is a treaty between countries that agree to cooperate and abide one set of laws, the Hague Convention, for the return of children removed from their home country for custody disputes.