The Case Against a Presumption of Joint Custody in Minnesota


The following is a document with written objections to the idea of having the state of Minnesota go to the presumption of joint custody as the standard.  Even though most legal authorities will tell you that there is no presumption of custody in the state, if Minnesota does not have the joint custody presumption, one would think that means the presumption is sole custody.



I recently sat in a room with legal professionals and listened to them have a lengthy discussion about how they hoped we would never have a joint custody presumption and how they wished that we would “do away with” the custody labels all together because parents get “so stuck on those labels”.  They prefer that everyone talk about parenting time in percentages and keep it as close to what it was during the marriage.  That sounds noble and all, but I can assure you and bring forth several people who were never given the option to continue the same percentage of parenting time as they had during the marriage.  I reminded the group that maybe in their legal world (that is completely out of touch with the reality of the real world) it may be fine to do away with the labels, you know, in a way that won’t make anyone feel bad (sarcasm intended), parents get “stuck on” the labels because in the real world those labels ARE important.  For a parent who doesn’t have custody, schools and medical professionals don’t seem to understand that the parent who does not have custody can still have information about their child.  Being a non custodial parent is not the same as being a parent whose parental rights have been terminated.




Thank goodness so far Minnesota has not accepted a presumption of joint custody as standard.  On Friday, the Minnesota legislature passed a bill that changes the minimum percentage of parenting time allotted each parent to 35% up from what it was formerly, 25%.  The governor may veto the bill. I will let you know what happens as I find out.  For now, <a href="/files/5/1/5/2/0/309915-302515/Written_Submission_Against_Joint_Physical_Custody.doc”>The Case Against Joint Custody.  I agree wholeheartedly that it would be a horrible idea and that parenting fights are typically over the legal custody and not the physical custody.



 




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About lifesdoorsmediation

I am a mediator, Life and Divorce Coach and an Instructor of a High Conflict Divorce Program.

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