Do mothers have more of a right to custody than fathers?

Often, people in Arizona assume that the mother is going to get primary custody rights in a divorce, as if she somehow has more of a right to be the primary custody holder than the father. Not only is this inaccurate in many cases, but it is untrue that both sides have different "levels" of rights where children are concerned.

The court considers custody rights to be completely equal, split 50/50, between parents who are married. This means that when you get to court for your divorce, you're both starting on the same ground with the same rights.

In fact, the raw statistics show that this even holds true with rulings. When both the mother and father want to have primary custody and ask for it, mothers get it in about 50 percent of cases and fathers get it in the other 50 percent. It's virtually a dead heat.

Now, this does not take into account cases in which only one parent asks for custody. For example, a mother may want custody, a father may not want it, and so custody will quickly go to the mother. While things like this can change the overall statistics, the important thing to look at to understand your rights is that they are even in those cases in which both parents are seeking the same thing.

If you are going through a divorce, then, it's important to know about your legal rights and how to best fight for custody of your children, whether you are the mother or the father. Don't let your attitude be swayed by myths that don't line up with the facts.

Source: Huffington Post, "How To Lose Child Custody," Jacqueline Harounian, accessed Sep. 30, 2015

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