Child custody is a challenging process when you are going through a divorce. In this country, around 80% of parents who have primary custody of children are mothers. This doesn’t mean that dads should assume they won’t have their children as much.
Courts are noticing the men who are pushing to have more time with their children. More often, fathers are being given a chance to have an active role in raising their kids. This might come from terms worked out during mediation, or it might be the result of a court battle.
Child’s needs trump everything else
The primary factor in deciding who is going to spend more time raising the kids is what’s best for the children. They need to have stability and consistency to thrive. The court will consider which adult is best able to provide this.
In some situations, spending equal time with both parents is what’s best. This type of relationship requires adults to work as a team. They will often use co-parenting or joint custody to make this happen.
Raising the children
When you are trying to raise your children, they need to know that you will be there for important events. There is a good chance that your ex will also attend those activities, but remember that you are there for the kids. Don’t do anything that would make this a stressful time. Instead, keep the focus where it belongs. Anything that you have to discuss with your ex can wait until later.
Paying child support
The financial support is another aspect of child custody. The court looks at several factors to determine who is going to pay what. This order also includes who must have health insurance for the children. If you are ordered to make the payments, make sure you do so as ordered. You can face time in jail and other consequences if you don’t.
You can file for a modification of the child support order if you aren’t able to pay. The court is going to look at what’s reasonable. It expects that you will do whatever it takes to pay at least some support for your children.
When you are in the midst of a child custody battle, be prepared to show why your way is the best one for the child. Working with someone familiar with situations like yours can help you to find out what options are present, so you know how to proceed.