What Is “Residential Custody”?

Although it is a difficult reality to face, some parents find divorce to be the best solution for their marital problems. This might be hard on the children and the family dynamics, but spouses in Texas and elsewhere make it work by taking the time to develop a workable custody plan. With a joint custody arrangement, this typically looks like a child alternating time with each parent. However, some divorcing parents experience gender disparities when the courts determine what a custody arrangement will look like.

For most of America’s history, fathers were the parents deemed to “own” their children. This meant that when parents parted ways, the father was awarded primary custody of the children. This trend changed at the beginning of the 20th century, putting mothers in a superior position to fathers. Because they were viewed by society as being nurturing and providing children with what they needed, there tended to be no legal battle when it came to custody since fathers were considered to be ill-equipped to handle the demands of parenting.

Although some gender disparities exist to a certain degree, the growing trend is to develop a joint custody arrangement. Divorcing parents today tend to lean towards residential custody, which is a gender-neutral custody arrangement that allows both parents to have the child in their household equally.

The law presumes that children are best served when they maintain a steady, meaningful relationship with both of their parents. Thus, developing a joint custody arrangement that meets the best interests of the children is often the ultimate goal. Nonetheless, this can be challenging to accomplish on your own. Divorcing parents dealing with this or other family law issues should take the time to understand their rights.

Source: Theglobaldispatch.com, “Equal Residential Custody: A Modern Divorce Solution,” Oct. 18, 2016

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