The modern shift in parenting roles

Divorcing fathers in Minnesota may be nervous about what is in store for them in terms of a child custody judgment. Although research has begun to show that men's involvement in their children's lives can help their children's development, family law courts are still traditionally seen as being more favorable to mothers.

Some fathers are choosing to hire family law firms that work only for men, believing that these firms may have more of an investment in fighting for their paternal rights. Of course, any lawyer can be capable of representing a man's interests in a divorce, provided that the lawyer understands that no single custody arrangement will be the best fit for every set of parents. Single fathers may need to be prepared to fight a little harder for their right to custody, since they will first need to bring an action in court that establishes that they do have fathers' rights. Once paternity is established, many judges will treat the single father the same way as they would treat a divorcing father.

Despite some fathers' fear that courts will be unfair to them, there has been a significant decrease in the number of mothers being given sole custody over the past two decades. A study of Wisconsin court decisions revealed that in 1986, mothers were granted sole custody 80 percent of the time; that percentage dropped to 42 in 2008. More men are now being granted equal shared custody, and even married men have begun to take on the role of homemaker at an increasing rate.

Fathers in Minnesota who are hoping to be granted a fair amount of custody time with their children may want to speak with a family law attorney. The attorney can help such a client by trying to reach a settlement agreement detailing the amount of time that each parent will spend with their children.

Source: USA Today , "More dads demand equal custody rights", Sharon Jayson, June 14, 2014

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