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Child custody arrangements require old fashioned cooperation

Readers might fear that the ease at which couples can file for divorce may be undermining the institution of marriage, or perhaps encouraging frivolous marriages. With divorce as a readily accessible option, a marriage that turns out to be a mistake can be dissolved quickly, with minimal consequences.

Although this lighthearted approach to marriage may be practiced in Hollywood, real life couples are another matter. In fact, recent census data suggests just the opposite. According to the U.S. Census Bureau, the median age at which individuals are marrying has increased to around 26. In addition, more adults in their thirties and even forties are single, having never married.

Viewed from the perspective of divorce, women are attributed to initiating around two-thirds of the proceedings. Some commentators believe this trend is in accord with the increase age of newlyweds. As women feel more economically independent, they may be comfortable remaining single -- or regaining single status by filing for divorce.

However, traditional considerations may still be at play when it comes to children. If children are benefitting from the influence of both parents, couples may be more willing to remain married. Although joint legal custody is a possible arrangement among divorced parents, the scheduling can be a challenge even for the most organized of individuals.

For example, a common visitation plan for a non-custodial parent might be every other weekend, one weeknight per week, and several weeks of summer vacation. In total, such an arrangement might amount to an 80-20 visitation split between the custodial and non-custodial parent. However, many family law courts are open to a variety of modifications, especially when it would be in the best interests of the children.

Source: forbes.com, “Not Your Mother's Divorce: Three 21st Century Trends,” Jeff Landers, June 20, 2013

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Child custody arrangements require old fashioned cooperation | Peter A D'Angelo, Attorney at Law, PLC