“Custody schedules are detailed and complex, which makes them hard to compare,” said Ben Coltrin, Custody X Change co-founder and president. “However, it's easy to see the state-by-state differences once you have a percentage for every state. We conducted this study to be able to easily highlight these differences.”
For the assessment, the analysts examined judicial standards in every state and surveyed legal professionals across the United States to find out the schedules they often see the most. They only identified cases in which both parents wanted custody and there were no extenuating circumstances, such as criminal conviction or long-distance separation.
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After analyzing the results, they found that Georgia fell toward the bottom of the pack at No. 46 on the list, with dads only receiving 23.5 percent of their children’s time. The Peach State was followed by Illinois at No. 47, Mississippi at No. 48, Oklahoma at No. 49 and Tennessee at No. 50.
Twenty states, including Florida, Missouri, and Massachusetts, tied for the No. 1 spot, with dads getting 50 percent.
Although the majority of American dads were granted less than 50 percent of custody, the researchers noted that 25 state legislatures considered laws to encourage shared parenting after divorce or make it the default.
“Our study shows 40 percent of states aim to give children equal time with each parent,” said Coltrin. “We're hoping this study will affect the dialog that's taking place as states consider changing their custody laws. States may increase time for dads, as they compare themselves to their neighbor-states.”
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