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Author Topic: Father wants 50/50 custody  (Read 2901 times)

Yoda

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Father wants 50/50 custody
« on: Feb 24, 2006, 03:01:38 PM »
I am involved in caring for children as much as I can be, but my wife was a stay at home mom. I went for a consultation with a couple of lawyers and gleened the initial strategy to keep a journal of how involved I am in various parenting rolls, and also to get my wife back to work, so that by the time I fight this, the fact that she's a stay at home mom will be in the past and I'll be more involved with the kids. She has gone back to work part time, not because I urged her, but because the kids are now school age. I have been keeping a journal, and so far, found that for meals, meeting with kids teachers, and assisting with homework, I'm at about 2/3 involvement. For bathing it's 50/50. Taking them to school and disciplining (no not beating, I rarely spank) is 100% me. I haven't just suddenly become so involved because I'm keeping a journal. I always have been. I know keeping a journal is tacky, but if it comes down to it, it won't just be me saying "I'm really involved with the kids". I can show them. In the meantime I won't make comments to my wife about me doing things more than her. I don't mind being involved, it's part of being a father.

Texas has joint custody, but it's not 50/50. Normally the mother gets physical custody though, and the father gets around 35-40% visitation. The lawyers I saw said that the courts are not biased towards the mother as far as custody goes. It's just that the facts show that typically the mother has more involvement with the kids. In my case though, I think I can show that I am more involved with them, so I should get physical custody right?

The mother is not abusive to the kids either. I know this would be a fight, and that means expensive. I cannot afford this, and I'm hoping my wife would agree to mediation rather than resort to spending thousands on lawyers. I'm hoping that if I present her with a fair 50/50 split of assets and 50/50 custody that she will accept that - and if not show her that I have the facts on my side. Although this might prompt her to run to a lawyer.

Does anyone have any experience with this when the father is involved with child rearing as much as I am and wants at least 50/50 custody?


futureuselesseater

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RE: Father wants 50/50 custody
« Reply #1 on: Feb 24, 2006, 05:02:40 PM »
It is always possible and you should definately try to get 50/50 if that si what you want, but in Texas most of the time they go by the standard possession oder in almost all cases.  If you do end up with standard ask for the full amount of standard possession which is 1,3,5th weekend from Friday pm at 6pm- Monday morning where you may take them to school.  Than get one overnight per week which I believe that night to be Thursday under the standard order.  So, EOW you could have the kids Thursday night, take them to school on Friday, than have them for the weekend and return them to the school Monday morning.

I believe Texas has done well giving the NCP more time and that is why they go with standard more rather than 50/50.  It may not be fair, but it is better than what it used to be when there were no overnights during the week and the weekends ended on Sunday.  

So, go for the 50/50 and if you don't get it than hopefully you will get the full standard schedule as it is a fair schedule to work with.

Yoda

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RE: Father wants 50/50 custody
« Reply #2 on: Feb 24, 2006, 07:24:34 PM »
>It is always possible and you should definately try to get
>50/50 if that si what you want, but in Texas most of the time
>they go by the standard possession oder in almost all cases.

Actually, I'd like 100%, but I don't see that happening. The mother is not abusive or doing drugs/alchohol or anything like that. In the standard possession order, only one of the parents is given physical custody right?

The law doesn't specify if the mother or father should get the physical custody. Isn't it usually decided by who does more of the parental duties?

>If you do end up with standard ask for the full amount of
>standard possession which is 1,3,5th weekend from Friday pm at
>6pm- Monday morning where you may take them to school.  Than
>get one overnight per week which I believe that night to be
>Thursday under the standard order.  So, EOW you could have the
>kids Thursday night, take them to school on Friday, than have
>them for the weekend and return them to the school Monday
>morning.

Is that referred to as 'extended standard possession'?

>
>I believe Texas has done well giving the NCP more time and
>that is why they go with standard more rather than 50/50.  It
>may not be fair, but it is better than what it used to be when
>there were no overnights during the week and the weekends
>ended on Sunday.  

True... although 1 weeknight/week still doesn't sound like much.

>So, go for the 50/50 and if you don't get it than hopefully
>you will get the full standard schedule as it is a fair
>schedule to work with.

Do you know what determines if the father can get the full standard schedule? If the mother objects is it going to be an expensive fight to get that?

Davy

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RE: Father wants 50/50 custody
« Reply #3 on: Feb 25, 2006, 12:08:37 AM »
I know of a recent case in a north Tx county whereas a joint arrangement has the father with EOW and Mon and Tues (return on Wed)every week.  Mom wanted to move north and Dad wanted to move south from marital home so court ordered marital home sold and both parents reside in a community approx. mid-point of their desire locations.  

Ten year marriage, 4 yr old son, both involved parents and both contributed to dissolving marriage and custody issues were heated.
No CS reward.

I would suggest developing a parenting plan focused on the current and future needs of the children.  If that means the children are in your custody and influence 70% of the time then so be it.  Keep attorneys and courts out of the picture as much as possible.  Attorneys normally reguritate the court's mother custody discretionary desires.  

futureuselesseater

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RE: Father wants 50/50 custody
« Reply #4 on: Feb 25, 2006, 10:48:19 AM »
Actually, I know in my case my sons father asked for full standard and it was like it was automatic when it was ordered.  After it was ordered my sons father gave up a lot of his time all on his own, but it he easily got full standard and he wasn't that involved from the get go.  So, your chance of getting that or more is good seeing you are very involved!!

Like I said, go for as much as you can.  The judge will see how much you want to be involved in your kids lives and possibly grant you some extra time.  WHo knows!  Judges have a standard they go by, but that doesn't mean they have to go by that.  They can do things differently under their discretion of they see it calls for it.

Good luck!


Yoda

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RE: Father wants 50/50 custody
« Reply #5 on: Feb 25, 2006, 05:20:46 PM »
Thanks futureuslesseater and Davy. Your posts were encouraging. So it sounds like joint posession with full standard is what I could easily get if my wife wants to fight it rather than go through mediation.

Davy, if I told my wife I wanted them 70% of the time, she would likely want to fight it, and neither one of us could afford that. Her attourneys would probably tell her they would get their fee from me. That's interesting though in the case you cited that no CS was awarded. Was that because it was full standard possession?

BTW, I'm reading a book called "Getting Divorced without Ruining Your Life". It's about how to get divorced while avoiding lawyers as much as possible, and using mediation. That part I like about it. But what I don't like about it is that in not one of their examples is the father the most fit parent. The book never gives any credit to the possibility that the father should get more than full standard possession.


fatherwithcustody

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RE: Father wants 50/50 custody
« Reply #6 on: Feb 25, 2006, 06:31:30 PM »
Why not just go for custody? I too live in Texas and have won this battle. If you go for custody, then maybe she will settle for 50/50. How close to you live near each other? If I were you, I wouldn't show her anything about the facts on your side, just let it come out in court.

Yoda

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RE: Father wants 50/50 custody
« Reply #7 on: Feb 26, 2006, 11:17:39 AM »
>Why not just go for custody? I too live in Texas and have won
>this battle. If you go for custody, then maybe she will settle
>for 50/50. How close to you live near each other? If I were
>you, I wouldn't show her anything about the facts on your
>side, just let it come out in court.

And there weren't any big problems with your ex as a mother? I thought if the mother was at least a decent parent that it would be very expensive to fight that. I would like full custody... How much does fighting a case like that cost?

fatherwithcustody

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RE: Father wants 50/50 custody
« Reply #8 on: Feb 27, 2006, 04:24:29 PM »
I had been documenting stuff for 3 and a half years of the different things she would do or the way she would treat me in regards to our son. Now none of this had any effect on our custody case, it just helped me out in so many other ways. The list is too long to go over but I will tell you this, the moment I filed for custody, she had just been served divorce papers from her husband at the time about a month earlier. I was just waiting for something to happen, and with her having problems with her marriage and going through a divorce, that to me constitutes a "change in circumstance". You can always file for a modification if there is a major change of circumstance, and with her going through a divorce, that was a major key in my timing of filing for custody. She was also unemployed, had been calling the police to their house on several different occasions due to them fighting. There were alleged suicide threats, domestic assaults etc, in the police reports. Now I understand that those reports are not really admissible in court, she didn't know that and she didn't have any legal representation at the first hearing. I also was having to look out for our son who had been complaining to me about how he did not want to go back to his mother's house due to the fighting in front of him. There is so much more to my story but not enough space on here, I just had things go my way in court and after the social study, the Dr. recommended that it would be in our son's best interest if he were to live with his father. Just a couple of points of interest, I was never married to the mother, our child was the result of a one night stand, we have had problems in the past when it came to custody and her wanting to move out of state when he was 2, I took her to court and won that battle as well. I have been involved in our son's life since he was born, I did have a paternity test done when he was about 2 months old. I always paid support, even before we went to court to establish custody and visitation. She took me to court when he was about a year to get custody, support and visitation in writing. I was always wanting more time but she would make it as difficult as possible, I think things happen for a reason although it may have taken over 5 years to get custody, I am glad I was always there for our son and I never gave up.

 

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