John Bednarz, P.C. | Divorce & Family Law Attorney
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Is the family law system really stacked against fathers?

Many fathers in Phoenix, Arizona, who find themselves in the middle of a custody dispute with their children's mother may believe the common perception that, should they wind up in front of a judge, they will not get a favorable result in a custody case.

However, relatively recent statistics paint a slightly different picture; specifically, dads in Arizona and elsewhere are often willing to give custody to the child's mother voluntarily, almost always without a court's involvement and, in most cases, without going through any legal proceeding whatsoever.

In a little over half of all custody cases, there never really is a dispute at all, since the father agrees that the mother should have custody. Additionally, in almost 30 percent of custody cases, the father agrees to give the mother custody after some wrangling between themselves. This means, effective, 4 out of 5 custody cases do not even get to a mediator. In reality, only 4 in 100 cases actually go to a custody trial, with a fraction of those actually getting decided by the judge instead of a last minute agreement between the parties.

While some could say that fathers do not try for custody since they know they have an uphill battle, other information suggests many fathers just don't spend as much time working on their relationship with their child, leaving the mother being the logical primary caregiver. In any event, Arizona dads need to remember that, when it comes to custody, their fathers' rights are legally exactly the same as those of the mother of the child, and they have options which include fighting for primary custody of their children.

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