Dads & Divorce Myths debunked. Given how motherhood is venerated in America, it’s easy for fathers to feel like an afterthought.
Father’s Day follows Mother’s Day on the calendar. Baby Showers are often “no-men-allowed” affairs. All too often dads get portrayed in the media as bumbling, childish, and ineffectual.
It’s easy for dedicated dads to feel like they’re getting a raw deal. This is doubly so when they’re going through a divorce. But while divorces are undoubtedly rough on families, they aren’t quite as skewed against fathers as you might think. Here are three popular myths about dads and divorce that simply are not true.
1. Mothers Always Get Physical Custody
When a family court in the State of New Jersey is deciding on custody, there are 14 distinct categories that fall into consideration. Gender of the parent isn’t one of them. Some of the factors that are considered are: the suitability of the home environment offered, the work responsibilities of the parent, and the amount and quality of time the parent has spent with the child before and after the separation.
Some of these rules seem to skew in favor of the mother because of traditional gender roles, but that’s not an explicit gender bias. These decisions have more to do with which parent can provide the best home life for the child. If you can prove that you can do that, you will have a good case to make for primary physical custody. It’s also worth pointing out that equal parenting time is becoming ever more common.
2. Fathers Always Pay Child Support
As with custody gender is not a criterion when determining child support. Child support is about the needs of the child and each parent’s responsibility for financially providing for them. That means that if a father has primary physical custody or if he makes substantially less money than the mother while having close to equal parenting time, it is possible that she will be the one to pay child support. It also means that there are circumstances where child support will simply not be necessary.
3. The Mothers Get To Make All The Decisions About Their Children
This is simply not true, even if the mother has primary physical custody. You see, outside of physical custody, there is something called “legal custody.” Legal custody means that both parents are allowed input in important decisions in a child’s upbringing whether it be related to a child needing braces, which schools they attend, or which extra-curricular activities they should take. While physical custody is a factor in these decisions, a father has a right to input in these cases.
If you have more questions about a father’s parental rights after divorce, call us for a free consult at (856) 227-7888 to discuss your legal options. We’re also in on Facebook. We’re committed to ensure the fairest possible outcome.