OK so now I have said in a previous article that women get custody much more often than men. (CUSTODY, Doesn’t The Mother Always Get Custody?) But, I have contradicted that and said that judges don’t favor one gender over the other. What gives? First, parents are greater than the sum of their gender. Second, just being a good or even a great parent does not make the same person an equally good litigant and/or witness.
As a Frederick custody and divorce lawyer I have observed that parents with time for the children have a distinct advantage. Even in the modern world, there are more stay at home moms than stay at home dads so, that accounts for some of the advantage. Status as a “primary caregiver” does get favorable treatment. Even in the modern world, women more commonly work on a schedule that is conducive to parenting; eg. getting home and picking the kids up before dinner. Men work longer hours outside the home on average and that accounts for a great deal of the disparity between fathers and mothers winning custody.
There are also certain occupations which lend themselves to custody. These are occupations where the parent works only while the children are at school or sleeping. For example, nurses often work from 7p.m. to 7a.m. three days of the week. Teachers are at work while the children are at school and off work when they are not. Those occupations traditionally employ a greater percentage of women than men. Once again accounting for some of the disproportionality.
As a Frederick custody and divorce lawyer,I find women can be better litigants than men in custody cases. They tend to create more witnesses and wider networks such as play dates, volunteering at school etc. In part because of the time advantages stated above. In part because women talk about their children at work more than men. In contrast men’s co-workers and casual friends may not know they have children at all. How can you get a co-worker to testify on your behalf at a custody hearing, if he/she does not know you have kids?
Women tend to keep better ”custody type” records than men. In particular calendars showing when the other parent was late, when the child(ren) were sick, what clothing did or did not come home with the kids, when the homework was or wasn’t done etc. Calendars are so important, that I give every new Custody Place client , father or mother, a pocket daytimer for the express purpose of keeping child centered daily notes. I get them back filled in by more women than men.
Is there something about women that makes them keep such journals more often than men? Maybe keeping diaries as little girls? I claim no answer. As a Frederick divorce and custody lawyer, I see that the party with the most time for the children and who gives the better presentation is the one who gets primary custody. To men I say, forewarned is forearmed.
Timothy Conlon, Esquire for The Custody Place.
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