Child custody is an important topic to discuss during a separation or divorce. Your child deserves to know where they will live and who they will be able to rely on in the home.
As a parent, you deserve an opportunity to be in your child’s life and the respect to know when they’ll be in your care. You should be able to set up a parenting plan that is both easy to understand and simple to follow.
There are misconceptions about child custody that may influence how you approach your divorce that must be corrected. Here are some common misconceptions and the truth to keep in mind.
- Women always get custody over fathers
This misconception is somewhat rooted in truth in that it used to be the case that mothers were often given custody over fathers in the past. Why? In those times, it was less likely for women to work, and it was more likely that women would have been the primary caretakers for their children.
Today, judges largely like to see both parents spending equal time with their children. When that’s not possible, coming up with a reasonable custody schedule where both parents see their children is still a priority.
- If your ex doesn’t pay child support, they can’t have custody time
This is a misconception that is completely false. A child support order is separate from a child custody order. Even if your ex-partner is not paying what they owe, you should not limit their visitation or custody time.
You can go back to court to ask to change your custody schedule as a result of not receiving support, or you could pursue other methods of obtaining the support your child needs, such as by asking the state to garnish your ex’s wages.
- Dads can’t be primary custodians
It’s completely false that men can’t be the primary guardians or custodians of their children. Men can, and sometimes do, get full legal and physical custody of their children when that’s warranted.
These are a few misconceptions about custody to remember. Both parents should have an opportunity to be in their children’s lives.