Does the Mom Always Get Custody of the Kids in a Divorce?

More than half of all divorces involve children under the age of 18. This means that most divorces involve custody agreements. Some couples discuss things like this when they decide they are going to separate. Other times, the parents won’t even have a conversation with their soon to be ex-spouse. That’s why it’s a good idea to meet with an Arizona divorce attorney right away. They’ll be able to draft a custody agreement and propose it to your spouse’s lawyer. This way, you don’t have to worry about whether you and your spouse can agree on terms.

Women Get Custody 60-80% of the Time

A lot of our clients assume that the mother always gets custody of the minor children in a divorce. That is not really the case. However, studies show that the woman does get primary custody of the kids in anywhere from 68-88%. Most of the time, this has to do with the fact that the mom can stay home and take care of the children. If the father is the primary breadwinner, he won’t be able to care of the kids full-time. Rather than have the kids stay with a sitter or daycare center, the courts would much rather they be with an actual parent. There are other times when the courts determine that the mom is an unfit parent. Or they may just think the dad would take better care of the children. Every case is different. If you’re looking to get primary custody, your Arizona divorce attorney will do their best to make it happen.

The Other Parent Normally Gets Visitation Rights

Just because one parent is awarded custody, that doesn’t mean the other won’t have rights. The judge will almost always award the second parent visitation rights. This typically involves having your children every other weekend and one night per week. Typically, Arizona divorce attorneys work out a holiday and summer schedule, so the kids get to spend ample time with both parents.

Your Arizona Divorce Attorney Can Negotiate a Custody Agreement

As mentioned above, your Arizona divorce attorney will try to negotiate a custody agreement with your spouse’s lawyer. They’ll go through every section of the custody arrangement and try to come up with a solution that is fair to both parents. They’ll also make sure the arrangement is healthy for your children.

The Judge Will Do What is Best for the Children

If the parents can’t work out a custody agreement, they’ll have to go to mediation. The mediator will review the file and ask both parties questions about the case. Once they have heard from both parents, they’ll make a recommendation to the court. If, by the time of trial, you still can’t agree on terms, the court may simply go with the mediator’s recommendation. They’ll only care about one thing – that the arrangement is in the best interests of the children.

Schedule an Appointment with a Skilled Arizona Divorce Attorney

One thing we always tell our clients is that it’s in your best interest to work out a custody arrangement on your own. If your attorneys can’t come to an agreement, the court will order you to go to mediation to resolve the custody issue. Whatever the mediator says will factor into the judge’s decision on custody. Rather than risk this happening, you should set up a time to meet with one of our Arizona divorce lawyers right away. This way, they can draft a tentative agreement with favorable terms and send to the other party for review.