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Thyden Gross and Callahan LLPCounselors and Attorneys at Law

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FATHERS’ RIGHTS
NOT JUST EVERY OTHER WEEKEND

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 December, 2010

Visitation Schedules

Thursday, December 23rd, 2010

There is no such thing as a standard visitation schedule. Visitation can be anything on which the parties agree. Here are several examples, together with the percentage of the year that visitation amounts to, courtesy of California Child Support Services.

  • 1 weekend per month (7%)
  • 1 3-day weekend per month (10%)
  • 1 2½-day weekend per month (8%)
  • 2 weekends per month (13%)
  • 1 weekend per month and 1 evening per week (14%)
  • Alternate weekends (14%)
  • Alternate weekends + 2 summer weeks (18%)
  • Alternate weekends, ½ holidays and 2 summer weeks (19%)
  • Alternate weekends, ½ holidays and 2 summer weeks (Parent 2 also has 2 summer weeks ) (18%)
  • Two 3-day weekends per month (20%)
  • Two 2½-day weekends per month (16%)
  • Alternate weekends and 1 evening per week (21%)
  • Alternate weekends and 1 overnight per week (28%)
  • Alternate 3-day weekends (21%)
  • Alternate 2½-day weekends (18%)
  • Alternate weekends, ½ holidays and 4 summer weeks (alternate summer weekends with makeups) (21%)
  • Alternate weekends, ½ holidays and 4 summer weeks (no alternating summer weekends) (21%)
  • Alternate weekends & ½ holidays and ½ summer (with or without alternate summer weekends) (22%)
  • Alternate 3-day weekends plus 1 evening per week (28%)
  • Alternate 2½-day weekends plus 1 evening per week (25%)
  • Alternate 3-day weekends plus 1 overnight Weekend per week (36%)
  • Alternate 2½-day weekends plus 1 overnight weekend per week (32%)
  • Alternate Weekend, 1/2 Holidays, 1 Evening/Week, 4 Summer Weeks (alternate weekends in summer, with makeups) (28%)
  • Alternate Weekends, 1 Evening/Week When School is in Session, and 1/2 School Vacation (28%)
  • 3 days per week (43%)
  • First, third, and fifth weekends (15%)
  • First, third, fifth, 3-day weekends (23%)
  • First, third, fifth, 2½-day weekends (19%)
  • First, third, and alternate fifth weekends (14%)
  • First, third, alternate fifth 3-day weekends (21%)
  • First, third, alternate fifth 2½-day weekends (18%)

Kids News

Monday, December 20th, 2010

Laura Doerflinger, MS, a licensed mental health counselor, has a good idea for co-parenting by email.  She suggests each parent pick a day to publish a Kids Mail email.  For example if you drop the children off Sunday night, publish Kid News Monday morning.  What to include?

  1. School:  Grades, homework, school incidents, forms that need to be filled out, conferences,  etc.
  2. Health:  Colds, doctor appointments, dentist, counseling, moods, etc.
  3. Financial:  Payments due or parenting plan division of costs for activities, medical expenses, etc.
  4. Schedule:  Changes to the current schedule, changes in your child’s plans, holiday times, etc.
  5. Vacations:  Clarification of times and plans – phone numbers, etc.
  6. Upcoming Events:  Social, school, extracurricular or sport activities.

Doerflinger suggests avoiding control issues by not giving instructions and relating only the facts.  Limit the news to co-parenting issues.  This is not a place to discuss your relationship.  Respond to the items that need responses and be sure to thank the other parent for the effort.

Peace on Earth

Tuesday, December 14th, 2010

Custody battles can get pretty ugly. People do and say things they normally wouldn’t because the stakes are the highest they can be, namely, the children.

But the highest correlation to a child’s stability and well-being after a divorce is the health of the parent’s relationship.

So let’s call a truce to hostilities until the New Year. Put aside your disputes and differences for the sake of the children and let them have a conflict free holiday season.

The best holiday gift you can give them is to let them know they are loved by their mothers and fathers.

Keep a Diary

Friday, December 3rd, 2010

“Now, mam’m, you say that Mr. Jones never spent time with the children?” the father’s attorney says to the mother who is on the witness stand.

“That’s right.”

“Well take a look at this doctor’s report that says Mr. Jones took the children to four out of the last five visits.  Did I read that right?”

“Yes.”

“And do you recall that Mr. Jones was at the school recital on November16?”

“Yes.”

“And he coaches their basketball team, doesn’t he?”

“Yes.”

“He took the children to the movies on Thanksgiving Day, didn’t he?”

“Yes.”

Trial Note to Dads:  Small details can add to your credibility and take away from Mom’s credibility at a custody trial when Mom claims you don’t spend any time with the kids.   Testimony is evidence, but so are doctor’s reports, school records, and your journal or diary of time spent with your kids.

 
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