The historical model of the nuclear family included a mother, a father and several children. Under the model the father served as the wage-earning parent while the mother forewent employment outside of the home in order to take care of the kids. In Arizona, and throughout the rest of the country, this model has become painfully outdated as single parent families, same sex parents, blended families and other familial arrangements have emerged.
Children who live in households with two parents receive support from both adults while under the same roof. However, children who live with only one parent due to their parents' separations, divorces or other personal choices many not directly experience the support of the parents that live out of their homes. In Arizona, courts can order that noncustodial parents pay child support in order to provide financial sustenance for their kids.
Prior posts on this Phoenix divorce and family law blog have discussed the rights of grandparents to seek visitation with their grandchildren. When parents split up and families become estranged from each other, grandparents can sometimes find that their relationships with their grandkids suffer if their children's former spouses have sole custody of the children. When it serves the best interests of the children, courts can order that grandparents receive visitation time with their grandchildren in order to preserve those relationships.
Last week this Arizona family law blog discussed the divorce of two famous musicians. Pursuant to their child custody agreement the parents will share custody of their three children, though due to the mother's work schedule the father will receive more time with their boys under his physical care. In the past, it always seemed that mothers were favored in terms of receiving physical custody of children after a divorce, but due to changing family structures and the role of women in the workforce, this presumption is beginning to fade.