Rotating Physical Custody or Equal Timesharing: Good for Noncustodial Parent. What About Kids?

Parents of a preschool child live several states apart.

How do they timeshare? One possibility …

The preschooler “rotates” from one parent’s home to the other’s, on a monthly basis.

That is possible (if not beneficial) before the child begins school.

But what about after the child starts school?

Typically, where the parents are separated by great distances, one parent or the other will be the primary residential parent.

The other parent may have liberal visitation over summer and other extended school vacations.

The nonresidential parent can have telephone and webcam visitation on a daily basis if desired.

A far less common arrangement is to continue rotating physical custody, but on an annual, rather than monthly, basis.

It can be done. But should it?

Many therapists consider this type of arrangement to be hard on kids, although perhaps “fair” to the non-custodial parent.

Historically, courts have not favored such arrangements.

But that may be starting to change under newer statutory schemes that strive to be more fair to both parents.

For better or worse …

Read more in this Newsday article: Shuttled school-age child can see both parents.

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And the Guys Have It … Too … Divorce, That Is

There’s a lot more to divorce than the legal aspects of it, of course. For the other aspects, there are a lot of books out there.

By women. For women.

So one Connecticut man decided it was time for a book by a man – for men. And so he took a stab at writing that book.

The author endeavors to prepare and advise men on successfully coping with the entire divorce process, all told from the male perspective.

Interestingly, the author reportedly describes the divorce as a contract to end a marriage. Perhaps a reference to a marital settlement agreement?

Catering to men, the book is presented as a how-to manual that is about a two hour read.

For just two hours’ investment of time, it might be a valuable read for women too – for insight into their spouses and their cases.

Read more in this Hartford [CT] Courant review: Divorced man uses own experiences to help other men.

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Older Indian Man Kills Wife to Marry Teenager

Thirty-five year old Indian house-painter has affair with teen-aged girl. He decides to marry her.

Problem: He is already married to a woman of his own age.

Wife leaves Husband due to affair, returning to her parents’ home.

Husband asks for divorce and presents divorce papers to Wife to sign. Wife refuses.

Husband consults attorney.

Husband again demands that Wife sign divorce papers. Wife again refuses.

This time Husband does not take “no” for an answer.

Husband produces a knife and stabs Wife twice. To her death.

Indian police arrest Husband and take his knife into evidence.

Husband’s remarriage to teenager seems less likely now.

Read more in this Times of India article: Man kills wife for refusing to sign divorce papers.

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Pending Bill in Congress Could Provide Support for Foster Kids to Extended Family Members

The foster care system falls far short of our society’s needs and expectations. But measures are afoot to help improve it.

Some of the improvements relate to kinship foster care, child care provided to dependent children by extended family members instead of strangers.

Two and one-half million American children live with extended family members, whether within or outside the foster care system.

In New York State, 400,000 kids live with relatives, as compared to 27,000 children in foster care with non-relatives.

Kinship foster care is more successful than foster care by strangers. The caregivers simply have greater commitment.

But they get a lot less support from the child welfare system, both financial and otherwise. Until, perhaps, now.

The House of Representatives has passed a bill called Fostering Connections To Success Act.

Among other things, the bill would provide funding for kinship foster care and kinship guardianship.

Similar bills are pending in the Senate.

If passed by both houses, this type of legislation could make an enormous difference to millions of children in foster care and their caregivers, including extended family members.

Read more in this Rochester Democrat & Chronicle article: Help relatives caring for kids.

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Indian Court Upholds Placement of Virtually Kidnapped Boy with Hindu “Foster” Family Over Biological Muslim Family

Baby disappeared during religious riots in India in 2002, which left approximately 1,000 people dead.

Baby’s Muslim family eventually gave him up for dead.

Recently, Baby’s family discovered that he was still alive.

A Hindu police officer had allegedly found Baby and more or less gave him to relatives to raise as their own child.

The police reportedly did not investigate Baby’s family’s missing person reports very thoroughly, or Baby would have been found in 2002.

Now, Baby no longer remembers his biological parents, and is attached to his “foster” mother.

Six years after Baby’s disappearance, Baby’s biological parents go to court in India to secure Baby’s return to their family.

But the Indian Court rules in favor of the so-called “foster” mother and denies Baby’s biological parents’ appeal.

The biological parents have not given up on getting their son back legally, now that they know he is alive.

In India, most commentators appear to side with the “foster” mother.

Are they guided by family law or religious law – or the law of politics?

Read more in this Washington Times article: Child custody case stirs Hindus, Muslims.

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Protection against Cancellation of Medical Insurance after Divorce

Ex-Husband has custody of Child. Ex-Wife is ordered to maintain medical insurance for Child.

Child seriously injured in bad accident. Dad discovers that Child’s insurance lapsed several weeks before.

Finding out that your child’s or your insurance coverage has been canceled or modified just when you need it most is a nightmare.

There are a couple of ways to prevent that from happening.

The source article discussed the Qualified Medical Child Support Judgment Order required in every Missouri divorce involving minor children where insurance is available.

But an endorsement to any insurance can be negotiated and ordered which requires the insurance carrier to provide 30 – 90 days notice to the insured prior to canceling or modifying (reducing) coverage. That works whether the insured is a child or a former spouse.

The party required to provide the insurance should be required to deliver the certificate of insurance / declarations page reflecting the special endorsement to the insured within 10 days after final judgment.

Read more in this South Side Journal article – Fox Family Files: Do you have a “Q-order in your divorce decree?

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India: Who Gets Baby Carried By Surrogate After Biological Parents Divorce?

India has a small but thriving industry. Surrogate mothering.

For poor, uneducated Indian women, being a surrogate is a way to earn the equivalent of $4 or $5,000.

And then the biological parents adopt the child.

But sometimes, things go wrong.

For example, a Japanese couple hired an Indian surrogate mother to carry their baby to term.

But before the baby was born, the couple divorced.

Now the biological mother no longer wants the baby. And the surrogate doesn’t want the baby.

The biological father does but, under Indian law, a single father cannot adopt.

So now the eleven (11) day old baby remains in the hospital, under the care of the biological father’s mother.

Awaiting someone who can take legal custody of her.

Read more in this Canadian Press article: Surrogate child custody case in limbo in India after Japanese parents divorce.

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Senior Divorce Turns Near-Fatal Times Three

Elderly couple married twenty years.

Wife files for divorce.

Wife obtains restraining order against 75 year old Husband.

Case drags on.

Husband unhappy.

Husband sets Wife’s house on fire, starting it in the attached garage.

Husband posts sign on the fence blaming “family court” for the fire.

Husband then sets Wife’s adult daughter’s house on fire, also starting it in the garage there.

Then Husband shoots himself in the head with a nail gun.

Wife and stepdaughter survive.

Husband survives.

Husband charged with attempted murder and arson.

Seventy-five year old Husband faces life sentence.

Read more in this San Diego Union Tribune article: Man who went on rampage over pending divorce to stand trial.

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Irish Court Orders Return of Boy to Poland Following Abduction by Mother

Boy lives in Poland with Mother, Grandfather and Grandmother, after Father dies.

Mother moves out of area and leaves Boy with Grandparents, visiting only occasionally.

Court temporarily restricts Mother’s parental rights and awards custody to Grandmother.

Grandmother and Grandfather divorce. Grandfather continues to live in same home with Grandmother and Boy.

Grandmother dies.

Mother removes Boy from Grandfather and disappears.

Court places Boy in Grandfather’s foster care permanently.

Mother fails to return Boy to Grandfather’s care.

It is later found that Mother removed Boy from Poland to Ireland.

Upon locating Boy, Grandfather applies for return of the Boy to his custody in Poland under the Hague Convention on the Civil Aspects of International Child Abduction.

Mother claimed that she left Poland, among other reasons, because Grandfather had a preferential relationship with the local authorities in Poland. Mother presented no proof of that though.

Mother also denied Grandfather’s custodial rights at the time she removed Boy from Poland, despite Polish court orders restricting her custodial rights and awarding Grandfather custodial rights.

The Court also found that the Mother had done little to maintain a relationship with Boy and had repeatedly, willfully ignored lawful Polish court orders.

Although the Boy expressed the wish to remain with his Mother in Ireland, the Court found that the Boy was immature and subject to Mother’s influence.

The Mother was subject to an arrest warrant for abducting Boy.

The Court also found that the Boy had not really settled in Ireland and that there did not appear to be a risk to the Boy if returned to Poland.

For all of the above reasons, the Irish court ordered return of Boy to Poland, his place of habitual residence before his wrongful abduction.

The Irish court concluded that any further custody proceedings should take place in Poland. The Irish court did not decide who should have custody.

Read more in this Irish Times article: Boy must be returned to his grandfather in Poland.

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International Debt: That Term Includes … Child Support

International debt. The term conjures up notions of international balance of trade.

But it can have another meaning entirely.

International child support debt. What’s that?

That’s when a nation’s children are owed support by foreigners.

And also when a nation’s adults owe support to foreign children.

These are international financial transactions.

Foreigners, mostly New Zealanders and Americans, owe Australian children $235 million. Canada and Britain also have substantial international child support debt.

But the problem goes beyond even that.

Under the Hague Convention, Australia is obligated to collect from Australia residents monies owed to foreign children.

And other nations that are parties to the Hague Convention have reciprocal obligations to collect international child support for foreign children.

Read more in this Australian article: Foreign dads boost child support debt.

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