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Divorce Settlements & Why Mothers Generally Get Primary Custody

Misconceptions about divorce are prevalent, and one of them is that parents frequently engage in custody battles that are litigated in court and resolved by a judge’s ruling.

The truth is that most couples prefer to settle their differences privately and avoid courtroom litigation. Even when a custody issue becomes high profile in the media, like the case of Brad Pitt and Angelina Jolie, this is true.

Here are some interesting statistics reported in the Huffington Post that put child custody litigation into a proper perspective:

  • Only 4 percent of custody cases go to trial and only 1.5 percent do not settle and are resolved through completed custody litigation.
  • In approximately 51 percent of custody cases, the couples decide without any assistance that the mother should be the custodial parent.
  • In 29 percent of custody cases, custody arrangements are decided without any third party involvement
  • In 11 percent of custody cases, couples use mediation and arrive at the decision the mother would have primary custody.
  • In 5 percent of cases, the custody issue resolves after a custody evaluation is done.
  • The courts do not influence the custody arrangement decisions in 91 percent of child custody cases.

What Factors Influence the Decision to Make Mothers Primary Custodians?

During divorce, most parents want the process to go as smoothly as possible for the children. Introducing the least amount of life style change generally makes the transition for children easier. These statistics show why mothers typically get most of the primary care duties, even when both parents work.

The Pew Research Center released a report in 2011 regarding families with children and it found:

  • A married father devotes on the average 6.5 hours a week to childcare activities with his children.
  • The married mother devotes on the average 12.9 hours a week to childcare activities with children.
  • (Consequently, most mothers form closer bonds with their children.)
  • After a divorce is final, only 22 percent of fathers see their children more than once a week.
  • About 29 percent of fathers see their children one to four times a month.
  • An estimated 27 percent of fathers have no contact with their children at all.
  • Discuss Child Custody with a Caring and Competent Divorce Lawyer

There are many factors to weigh when arranging for child custody, and it is wise to discuss your concerns with an experienced lawyer. Attorney Chris Palermo can help you make important decisions that affect your and your children’s future.