Trying to figure out your children’s custody arrangement is one part of getting divorced. If both parties aren’t willing to compromise, it can be a long, stressful process. While mothers do not automatically receive sole custody, some fathers may worry that they won’t even be awarded enough time with their children.
“Fathers can influence their children by providing direct care, as well as indirectly through financial support and social modelling. Father involvement has impacts which begin prenatally and extend through the child’s life course,” states a 2015 report shared by the Encyclopedia of Early Childhood Development.
A 2016 clinical report, available via the professional association American Academy of Pediatrics (AAP) website, echoes this sentiment, stating: “Fathers can influence their children’s health and well-being.”
As long as it remains in the best interest of the kids to spend time with their father, granted he provides a healthy environment for them, a father’s rights lawyer can assist in making sure a father is involved in his children’s lives.
A father’s rights lawyer is a legal representative that specializes in helping fathers fight for custody of their children.
An experienced divorce lawyer who has advocated for father’s rights will be able to best present a father’s case to the Court, showing how important the father’s role in the children’s lives has been.
“Although Courts try to avoid any ‘gender bias,’ sometimes they just don’t realize that they are treating a father differently in a particular case than they would the same said of facts with the roles reversed,” explains Joel M. Sunshine, a matrimonial lawyer and partner at Sunshine & Feinstein, LLP of Garden City, New York.
“Sometimes, we have to tactfully point out to the Court that, for example, if the gender roles had been reversed in a particular case, they would quickly grant custody to the mother, so they should be just as quick to grant custody to the father under the same facts," continues Sunshine.
Oftentimes, father’s rights lawyers have experience with other aspects of divorce cases, including child support, spousal maintenance and visitation, as well as modifications and enforcements to existing orders or agreements.
As briefly aforementioned, the best interest of the children is a major determining factor in a child custody case. The judge will assess various details regarding both the children and their parents, before coming to a conclusion. Such details include the financial and mental stability of each parent, both of which play a role in the type of environment provided to your kids. If it isn’t positive, the judge will likely rule against granting you custody.
The previous AAP report dives deeper into this topic, pointing out: “A father’s own well-being can also influence the well-being of the child.”
For example, any mental health problems of either parent, not just the father’s, can “have predictable and negative consequences on parental child care habits, father involvement, and co-parenting.” In fact, the report states: “Depressed parents tend to spend less time with their children (aged 3 years and younger) and limit physical contact (i.e. hugging and cuddling) and are more likely to express frustration in child rearing.”
Other considerations of a case include the current relationships the children have with each parent, and any past drug use that could put the children in danger.
Further, a judge will evaluate how prepared both parents are in terms of managing the children on a day-by-day basis.
Who will help the kids get ready for school in the morning? Who will pick them up in the afternoon? Who will make sure they complete their homework every night?
The answers to these questions will bring the judge a few steps closer to making a decision. A father’s rights lawyer can help you make the case that you are capable of performing these tasks every day, and will be a reliable and consistent presence in your children’s lives.
Are you going through a divorce and need assistance with your custody arrangement? Contact one of the child custody lawyers at Sunshine & Feinstein, LLP focusing on father's rights to find out more about what we can do for you.
Sunshine & Feinstein, LLP, 666 Old Country Road, Suite 605, Garden City, NY 11530. (516) 742-6444. This is Attorney Advertising.