Irina Anissimova, CPA, CFF
|Posted on June 8, 2015 at 5:35 PM|
Every divorcing couple with children has to deal with timeshare and visitation for the non-custodial parent. I do not get involved in custody battles, my role is limited to an occasional calculation of timeshare but I do see a tendency to consider 50/50 timeshare as a desirable arrangement.
The main argument in favor of such split is parents' right to be involved in the upbringing of their children. The push comes from payors of child support - they want to reduce the payment and to get some benefit for their money.
While I understand the reason why 50/50 sharing is promoted by the courts and is becoming more and more common, I truly doubt that it is indeed desirable and is in the best interests of the children. To me it looks more like shifting psychological costs of adults' decisions onto defensless children.
The Unexpected Legacy of Divorce: A 25 Year Landmark Study describes visitation arrangements as one of the main and most harmful problems for children growing up. Some of the facts described in the book seem to me an outright and brutal disregard for children's well being (It has to be noted here that I myself grew up in a full family). Even from an adult perspective living in two households at the same time is extremely stressful and not at all desirable.
There is one more consideration that some of us older people remember - the high probability of limited visitation and resulting loss of involvement in children's lives used to be a deterrent for parents considering a divorce.
So what balance of rights vs. obligations do parents have with respect to their children these days and how much better off the children are compared to their place 100 years ago?
The Unexpected Legacy of Divorce: A 25 Year Landmark Study