Question about custody; since my ex and I split 3 years ago we’ve had an informal 80:20 child care arrangement. Now my ex wants 50:50.
Is it just a given he can get this? Can I fight to keep it 80:20?
He has a new partner (with 2 kids of her own) and mine don’t particularly like her. my issue is their dad is away A LOT with work so my kids will be raised largely by her.
Is this a matter for lawyers? I’ve tried expressing to him it’s not best for kids to change the arrangements now but he wants to hurt due to not getting what he wanted in the financial split. He knows the kids are my weak spot. I know he’s not asking for 50:50 for the right reasons.
Has anyone got any experience gaining more custody?
Generally, unless you have significant proof that your ex is not safe/healthy etc to have the kids 50:50 which it sounds like he is, then he would win in court. Having said this each case is different so definitely get some legal advice.
I wouldn’t say don’t fight it if you have good reason but courts will see dad wanting more time with his kids as a good thing, even if he has a new partner – blended families are definitely not something that would go against him.
Its hard to comment as we have been through a custody battle but the circumstance seem very different to yours. What I will say is try and find common ground through mediation with an outcome that is best for your children, not what suits you best as parents.
Thanks for all the advice. I’m definitely not opposed to him seeing the kids more but I don’t want my kids care being outsourced (to his gf as I know 100% he’ll hardly be there) when they have a capable parent (me) who can take them.
I completely understand this but as a co-parenting we have no/little control as to how our kids are parenting by the other parent. Focus on accepting it and ensuring all their needs are met when they are with you ….because this is something that you have control of.
“50/50” is NOT a given so be careful of the advice that you take. Equal shared parental responsibility is a presumption in the Family Law Act but equal time is NOT.
If you can, try to use mediation to come to a suitable arrangement that is in the best interests of the child. If one parent is acting out of hurt or resentment then it’s not possible for that parent to make decisions that are in the best interests of the child. You may end up in Court. Parents who use courts to decide arrangements are in the minority and the fact that they’re in Court means that there’s high conflict. This conflict may make an “equal time” arrangement LESS LIKELY than parents who come to this arrangement themselves.
That said, bear in mind that children having both parents involved in their lives is the favoured outcome unless there are major safety concerns etc. This may mean that he’d get more custody. Every case is different and nobody can tell you the likely outcome. My lawyer advised that it’s usually 4-6 nights a fortnight with the non- resident parent, half school holidays, make up time for the other parent if one parent wants to take the kids on holidays during the other parents time. Each case is so different. Here’s a good article from The Australian Institute of Family Studies (AIFS) that tells you more about ACTUAL parenting arrangements post separation and how they differ depending on how the arrangements are made: https://aifs.gov.au/publications/parenting-arrangements-after-separation