When a family court is charged with the responsibility of determining which living arrangements will best meet the needs of a child, there are numerous factors that play a role in a court's decision. Recently, a mother alleged that her ex-spouse's greater command of the English language was taken into consideration for granting child custody rights. Though the case was not heard in Kentucky, the findings of an appellant court could provide an example for other cases.
The idea of children being raised in homes headed by their grandparents is not a new phenomena, but it is becoming more prevalent. There are many reasons why a grandparent may have child custody, but recent figures estimate that approximately 3 million households consist of grandparents raising grandchildren. It is unclear how many of these families reside in Kentucky, but the challenges facing these elderly caregivers may be different than those facing other caregivers.
When parents decide to part ways, one of the most difficult decisions is how to best raise their children. In situations where it is appropriate, child custody will be decided in such a way that a child will spend time with both parents. Kentucky residents who are struggling to resolve these matters in the manner that will best serve their children may seek the advice of a neutral party.
In the 1960s, it became commonplace for family court judges to award primary custody to a mother since most stayed at home to care for the kids. Times have changed and not only are many more women in the workforce, studies have shown that children fare best with a shared child custody agreement. Kentucky has passed a law that sets shared custody as the starting point in these negotiations.
In many situations, when an unmarried father is faced with the responsibility of providing for an unexpected child, he may be reluctant to seek parenting rights. Though a father may no longer be in a relationship with the child's mother, he is still entitled to seek child custody or visitation rights. Those who reside in Kentucky do have access to professionals who can help them resolve these matters in the manner that will best meet the needs of their children.
After a divorce, many parents struggle to work out an acceptable parenting plan that can best meet the needs of their children. Many states, including Kentucky, have revised child custody laws in order to ensure that fathers are able to spend more time with their children. However, there are still many states that are failing to provide them with comparable parenting time.
There has been a concerted effort over the past several years for states to modify their laws in the matter of custody agreements. In fact, Kentucky recently passed a bill that requires judges to consider shared child custody as the default decision unless doing so would be detrimental to a child. However, one child care professional has urged family courts to carefully weigh the matter when it comes to children under the age of two.
Many years ago, it was presumed that mothers were best suited to be the primary caregivers in the event of a divorce. Over the past several years, there has been a shift toward permitting both parents shared parenting arrangements. Just recently, Kentucky became the first state to pass a law that requires judges to order joint child custody in the majority of cases.
The end of a relationship between parents is seldom an easy transition. Indeed, Kentucky parents are often caught up in so many conflicting emotions, that it may be difficult to see the forest for the trees. In these cases, no matter how distraught and angry parents may feel, child custody must be focused on what plans will best serve the needs of the children involved.
Several years ago, a story broke concerning the proper placement for a child of Native American heritage. Though that battle waged for some time, the main issue was whether a Native American child should be raised by his or her blood tribal relatives. Though there are currently no reservations located in Kentucky, there are still members of several tribes that reside here who may be interested in these types of child custody cases.