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Fathers' rights advocates want dads to have equal time with kids

In many child custody disputes in Georgia and across the nation, the courts side with the mothers. However, fathers' rights advocates want dads to be able to spend the same amount of time with their children as mothers do. In some states, they are pursuing legislation that would result in children splitting their time equally between mothers and fathers.

Fathers' rights advocates point out that the relationship between a father and a child is critical to a child's development. Therefore, it is important that the child has equal rights to spend time with both parents without legal complications. Unfortunately, too many dads are disfavored in shared custody cases.

People fighting for fathers' rights also point out that while it is possible to pursue a custody modification, it is not always easy to do so. One father shared his story, explaining that he has been fighting for a modification since his divorce in 2001 and still has not been able to obtain joint custody. He said his children are now teenagers and his heart aches when he is not able to see them every day. Moreover, their grandparents rarely get to spend time with them anymore.

People opposed to legislation that would have children living in two different homes argue that judges should not concentrate on perceived fairness for the parents. Instead, they should consider that it could be stressful for children to go from one house to another continuously. Also, they point out that the courts already make decisions based on the best interests of children involved, so no changes are necessary.

Source: DesMoinesRegister.com, "Should kids live with both parents after divorce? Father's rights advocates say yes," 29 March 2011

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William C. Gentry, Attorney at Law

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