When discussing parenting plans with divorcing parties, I often wonder what is the motivation behind their wants and the posturing that goes on. Some parties want the kids the majority of the time to satisfy their ego that he/she is the better parent. Some want to restrict the other's time with the children as punishment. Some want equal time to reduce child support. And yes, some want equal time with the children for both parents as they perceive that the children are entitled to have both parents as very interested parties in their lives. They go into the negotiations considering what is best for their children.
The number of children being born to unmarried partners has grown by leaps and bounds. The American Community Survey found that over 36% of women who gave birth in 2013 in the U.S.A were unmarried. A recent study from John Hopkins University found that more than half of millennial woman aged 26 to 31 who have babies are either unmarried or single instead of being part of a married couple.
When developing a Rhode Island Parenting Plan, what are factors to contemplate? Courts consider "best interest of the child". But when considering a parenting plan, we consider large blocks of time with each child. What should you be looking at to determine if you and/or your co-parent should enjoy those large blocks of time?
I am getting a divorce and my social media pages contains pictures of my new boyfriend or girlfriend and shows me when I drank too much. It shows that I am out 5 nights a week at different bars. What should I do with my Facebook pictures?
Parents are usually in the best position to understand their children and that is why mediation produces productive parenting plans. Parents can be torn by the tension between what they want and what may be best for each child. It is critical in almost every case that both parents build and maintain healthy relationships with each child.
Rape, "legitimate" or not, is the topic in the news as the 2012 Republican Convention is about to begin. However, another aspect that Rhode Islanders should understand and consider is that the rapist is entitled to make a claim child custody or the joint custody of the child or for visitation rights with the child.
Years ago, while walking through a curio shop in Wickford, Rhode Island, Steve Hirsch came across a platter with the following parenting adage, supposedly written by film and television actor Ricardo Mantalban. Although simplistic, its message is serious and sincere, filled with a simple directive. Steve has kept this for years, shared it with clients and read it to his children at times for the lesson it delivers. There is a lot of common sense to this quote:
Do you smoke cigarettes? Rhode Island smokers probably already know about the various risks associated with this bad habit. However, did you know that as a smoker, you may have a greater chance of losing your kids in a child custody dispute?