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Divorce Lawyers

Thyden Gross and Callahan LLPCounselors and Attorneys at Law




This is about fathers' rights law, and protecting the best interests of your children. It provides information, news and comments on laws, cases and strategies for life as a single father and winning your custody, access or child support case.

Archive for November, 2007

When Children Lie

Wednesday, November 21st, 2007

When children make allegations of sexual or other abuse how do we know whether they are telling the truth? We usually have them interviewed by a mental health professional and a court evaluator.

A recent study was conducted to determine if adults could ascertain when children were lying. Researchers had 58 children with an average age of four sit in a chair facing a mirror. They were told they were being videotaped. A researcher told the children she was bringing a toy into the room but they were not to peek. She left the toy and then returned and asked the children if they peeked.

Thirteen children did not peek and said they did not. Thirty five peeked and lied about it.

Then 64 adults viewed the video tapes and were asked if the children were lying or telling the truth. On the average the adults were correct about which children were lying only 42% of the time. They were even worse at picking the children who were telling the truth. About half of the adults who were child professionals did better than a chance level.

The conclusion of the study is that adults cannot accurately determine when children are telling the truth or lying.

Cost of Raising a Child Is One Million Dollars

Thursday, November 15th, 2007

Households in the top-third income bracket, that is above $118,200 in income, will spend $289,380 by their child’s 18th birthday—or about $17,000 a year, according to a Department of Agriculture study.

And MSNBC says the real cost is probably a million dollars per kid or more,

when you consider extras like sports equipment, summer camps, private school, Disney vacations, and a full-time nanny. Some parents throw extravagant birthday parties and won’t hesitate to buy their kids the latest video games and cell phones and splurge on Spanish and painting lessons.

College is left out of the USDA’s price tag. That’s $23,712 per year for a private college and $6,185 a year for a public college according to the College Board.

Then there are the children who live at home after college and indirect costs when a parent gives up work or promotions to care for children.

Fathering Court

Thursday, November 8th, 2007

The District of Columbia has launched a new pilot program to help fathers returning from jail become better parents. The Fathering Court will help fathers obtain drug treatment, parenting classes and job training.

The initial class of 45 noncustodial fathers will be provided with a needs assessment, case management, and community resources. Participants will have mandatory fathering classes, employment training, family and parental educational classes and mandatory drug testing.

“The Fathering Court is a unique effort to help fathers returning from prison become better parents—financially and emotionally—to their children,” said Family Court Presiding Judge Anita Josey-Herring. “[W]e will be able to help them find gainful employment, slowly increase the amount of child support they owe, and to develop meaningful relationships with their children. Custodial parents will get the child support they are due, fathers will have a chance to meet their support requirements, and the relationship between parent and child will be about more than just money.”

D.C. Attorney General Linda Singer agreed.

“Parents coming out of prison have many strikes against them, and this program is designed to give them a fighting chance to be a parent to their child or children,” she said.

Britney Gets Monitored Visitation

Thursday, November 1st, 2007

Family Law Commissioner Scott M. Gordon signed an Order on October 30, 2007, in Los Angeles ruling on several custody motions in the Britney Spears v. Kevin Federline case.

The court appointed Parenting Coach, Lisa Hacker, reported that it took her four attempts before she was able to meet with Britney. She said that Britney was not child-centered, that she wanted to what she wanted to do and not what would be enjoyable for the children. She said that there was no real schedule for the children at Britney’s house and the environment ranged from chaotic to somber. Britney rarely spoke with or played with the children during her visits. The Parenting Coach said:

The problem is that unless Ms. Spears realizes the consequences of her behavior and the impact that it has [on] her children, nothing is going to be successful.

As a result, the Commissioner gave Britney three visits per week, two from 12:00 Noon to 7:00 PM, and one overnight visit. The visits will be monitored and Britney will be tested for drugs and alcohol.

Spears and K-Fed are ordered to figure out holiday schedules with the kids. A complete custody evaluation report is due in the case in mid-January.

The Order in PDF.

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