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Men suffer for child support, get little help in custody battles

We hear a lot about "deadbeat dads" in the news. Fathers are railed against for failing to pay their child support and often in humiliating ways - some of which are even enforced by judicial order. There is the man who has been ordered by law not to have any more children. Another man who was ordered to admit his child support status to all women he meets. Some men are even forced to wear or display signs that identify them as "deadbeats." All of this negative attention does little to further fathers' rights in America, and in fact, ends up needlessly shaming men. There is a more severe situation that is often overlooked: The refusal of primary custodians to abide by custody agreements. Men need more legal support instead of blame, especially in these controversial situations.

U.S. fathers make up about 87 percent of child support payers and 82 percent of non-custodial parents. Custodial interference often leaves these men out in the cold, when mothers or other guardians block the men from access to their children. Most of these men are seeking contact through approved child custody orders, which are often ignored by stubborn mothers. Although there are many legal actions that are used against fathers who do not pay their child support, little recourse exists for the men who want more face time with their kids.

Fathers have tried calling the police, for example, when their children's mother or guardian refuses access. Authorities typically refuse to get involved in such custody disputes. The issue becomes a court matter. Few public attorneys are available to provide assistance for visitation and custody issues, which means only men with financial means are able to seek changes in their custody agreements.

If your ex-spouse is blocking you from seeing your children, consider enlisting the services of a qualified family attorney. These legal professionals can help you get the time you deserve with your children while helping protect your rights in the courtroom.

Source:  www.huffingtonpost.com, "Disparity between child support enforcement and custody enforcement" Joseph E. Cordell, May. 03, 2013

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