Keeping Things Equal For The Kids: Bizarre Things A Divorce Court Judge Can Do
With divorce continuing to be a common and widespread event in the U.S., and the continued demands that both parents have equal rights in all things, do not be surprised if something you think is unfair takes place during your divorce hearing. Even if nothing unusual happens during your initial divorce hearing, be mindful that no divorce is ever really final when you have children that you share with your ex-spouse. Here are some examples of the seemingly unfair and bizarre things a court judge can do during and after your initial divorce hearing.
Remove Your Custodial Rights Because You Don't Work
Most judges expect to see that both parents are making an effort to care and support their children financially. Unfortunately, that seriously backfires during a divorce because a judge can remove the at-home parent's custodial rights until the at-home parent proves that he/she has steady employment and solid income. If you are the at-home parent, you will undoubtedly be furious and frustrated given that you were there to provide care and keep house for the children as well as your soon-to-be-ex and now you are having everything taken from you, right down to your kids. Knowing that this can happen, try to get a job as soon as possible so that the judge will not be so inclined to hand down this bizarre (albeit temporary) ruling.
Force One Parent Into a Higher Tax Bracket to Pay the Other
Obviously, this is not on the judge's mind when the ruling is made. What the judge is trying to do is make both households equal for the children's sake so that the kids do not experience poverty on one side and riches on the other. Unfortunately, the end result is that one parent often slacks off or quits working, and then the judge makes you work more to make up for the lack of support with the other parent.
Subsequently, when you are pushed to work more to cover your own bills and make your ex's home close to equal in financial terms with your own, you end up in a higher tax bracket and further in debt while you try to pay your ex the court-ordered amounts. While any of this could easily be considered unfair, it helps to focus on your children. They move to and from between homes with the expectation that they will have food and a similar environment both ways.
Make Split Custody Orders That Are Weird
Children, especially siblings, should be traveling together between homes. However, your ex could request a bizarre order for split placement that keeps one child from coming and going, while the other child has half of his/her time with you and half with your ex. There are other bizarre split custody patterns too, so be prepared and hire a divorce attorney to help you understand what is happening.