United States Supreme Court to Enact Federal Parenting Plan Legislation

Parenting plan legislation requires or permits the parties to a custody dispute to detail how they plan to allocate decision-making and care-giving responsibilities between themselves. In a very small number of states, they are mandatory. In most states that have adopted this kind of legislation, however, they are voluntary.
Several states have enacted parenting plan legislation.
Recognizing that the adversarial approach to allocating parental rights and responsibilities is a burden on the courts, unhealthy for parents, and detrimental to children’s psychological interests and well-being, some states are beginning to explore alternative methods of dealing with custody issues.


Grandparents, aunts, uncles and cousins are still part of your life. Even if you're living with one parent, you can still see relatives on your other parent's side. You'll always be a part of their lives, even if your parents aren't together anymore.

Parenting plans

The three main purposes of parenting plan legislation are: 1. To shift the emphasis in custody cases from parental rights to parental responsibilities 2. Yo involve the parties more directly in their own custody determination and 3. To encourage and promote amicable resolutions of custody disputes without judicial intervention.

To the extent it requires the parties to answer specific questions about how particular responsibilities are to be allocated between them, parenting plan legislation at least partially achieves the first objective. On the other hand, it does not seem reasonable – or for that matter, necessary — to expect parents to lose interest in preserving and protecting their rights simply because they are also thinking about responsibilities.
Parenting plan legislation also partially achieves the second objective. It does not really take the power to decide custody away from judges and give it to parents, though. Even if the parents reach an agreement that they believe is in their children’s best interests, a court retains the power to reject the parties’ plan and impose its own if the one the parents devise is not close enough to the one the judge believes is ideal for them.
A serious question exists as to whether parenting plan legislation accomplishes the third objective, i.e., whether it really yields more amicable settlements without judicial intervention. Achievement of this goal requires an assumption that parents are always motivated by a desire to act in their children’s best interests. That assumption may not be realistic. For example, experience teaches that when child support is inversely correlated with the custody designation, as it is in many states, each party will be motivated by a desire to acquire that designation in order to be the one entitled to receive support instead of being the one required to pay.


Nonadversarial Family Law Models

In most countries, including the United States, court processes are designed for adversaries. A competitive, zero-sum model is used: one party wins something; one party loses what the other wins. 
When a couple submits a dispute over custody of their child to a court, it generally will be inclined to deal with it in the same way it deals with all conflicts that are submitted to a court for resolution: It will try to determine a winner and a loser; the winner will be awarded a prize; and the loser will have to pay. The "prize" in a custody case, of course, is a child. To win the prize, the parties will have to compete against each other in a contest to determine which of them is better for the child. In this model, each parent has an incentive to prove the other is a bad parent, or at least a comparatively inferior parent. Since the stakes are high, the parties may be expected to use every possible means at their disposal to do this, so they will bring up – or make up – every fault and shortcoming of the other parent that they possibly can. 
Unlike other kinds of court proceedings, in which very few, if any, aspects of the parties' personal lives are relevant, in a custody war virtually every aspect of the parties' lives – past, present and future – may be examined, and very often is. 
In a cruel inversion of 1 Corinthians 13:5 ("keep no record of past wrongs'), the adversary system often will reward the individual who has kept the most thorough record of past wrongs. If parents were not hostile toward each other before they entered into a custody proceeding, they almost certainly will be afterwards. And no matter how the decree is worded, the parties will believe that one of them has been officially declared the better parent, and one has been declared the worse parent. 
In many cases, the victorious parent may develop an unhealthy sense of entitlement, privilege and power. The defeated parent, meanwhile, may be expected to resent the other, and either will embark on a quest to right the perceived wrong the court and the other party have committed; or will remove himself completely from the situation. 
Either way, the child is assured of growing up feeling embattled, guilty, depressed, confused, betrayed, abandoned and angry.1 Recognizing that the adversarial approach to allocating parental rights and responsibilities is a burden on the courts, unhealthy for parents, and detrimental to children's psychological interests and well-being, some states are beginning to explore alternative methods of dealing with custody issues.2
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Children need both parents to be involved in their lives even when parents don't live together anymore! Loving parents like "Ray" are being denied their parental rights by the other parent and thier attorney, magistrate and judicial system!
Family courts routinely curtail the parenting rights of fit parents by choosing one custodial parent and one “visitor.” This must stop. The Supreme Court of the United States has found that “the interest of parents in the care, custody, and control of their children…is perhaps the oldest of the fundamental liberty interests recognized by this Court.” (Troxel v. Granville, 2000) This precept was first declared by the Court over 75 years ago, but has been routinely ignored in custody determinations.
Half of all American children are growing up without a father in the home because their parents are divorced or never married. Such children suffer much higher rates of child abuse, educational underachievement, depression or alienation, violence or gang activity, poor health, teen pregnancy, substance abuse, and dysfunctional future family relationships. Society blames “irresponsible fathers” for these problems. This is a serious oversimplification.
When parents are estranged, misguided laws, judicial traditions, and government policies drive many loving fathers (and some mothers) out of their children’s lives, with dismaying results for children. Current Florida cases as well as NationWide are out of control with corruption! Placing a "yoke" of bondage on another human being is SLAVERY. We demand answers and we demand changes in the family court system. This is a call to action!
The interests of children should be of paramount importance, but have given way to an abomination of a cottage industry exploiting children for profit and bankrupting the American public. It affects all of us because our civil and constitutional rights as a whole are being destroyed and we are becoming a Police State, if we're not one already. It is happening in family courts across America, the implications of which are pivotal to the future of this country.
Family Court has become an atrocity and it is unthinkable, yet an absurd fact that it is self-policing. Put best by the Roman poet Juvenal, “Sed quis custodiet ipsos custodes?” (Satire VI, lines 347–8) or in English, “Who will guard the guards themselves?”


Scott Adams
Scott Adams 


  • The interests of children should be of paramount importance, but have given way to an abomination of a cottage industry exploiting children for profit and bankrupting the American public. It affects all of us because our civil and constitutional rights as a whole are being destroyed and we are becoming a Police State, if we're not one already. It is happening in family courts across America, the implications of which are pivotal to the future of this country.
    Family Court has become an...

    Richard Johnson

    Richard Johnson 
  • We need I've been dealing g with this issue since my divorce. I love my sons and will do anything to just spend some time with them. They are literally my neighbors and yet I nor my parents get to see them. This process of alienation must end. Children need both parents!

    Nvr Johnson Pavlu

    Nvr Johnson Pavlu 
  • I currently firmly believe that the system of Family Courts is so closed, so flawed among our various states that it's rulings are so often lacking in thorough review of actual evidence of what's in the best interest of the child or children that it must be first dissolved. The rules & criteria established in each state are inconsistent. Even from county to county various practices are condoned. I'm against anonymous reports used as sole or first basis for opening a case & disrupting or...

    Nvr Johnson Pavlu

    Nvr Johnson Pavlu 
    • Nvr Johnson Pavlu 
    I oppose forced adoptions. Open adoptions at least provide a open way of inclusion (when desired,) by both parents & both of their families to love & contribute or give gifts rather than grief. Both parents are not always known, even when known maintaining a family unit of the two is often not desired by either. All too many come from disrupted families themselves, and focus still more on what they want, not what they are willing to give of themselves with respect for the time they spend...

    Nvr Johnson Pavlu

    Nvr Johnson Pavlu 
    • Nvr Johnson Pavlu 

    There is very little if any oversight of the Family Court system. Anonymous reporting is & can be done by any bored, critical, or bitter party who many times cause a waste of time & money while having little knowledge of the child or children or their family members. The accusers identity is kept secret so the there is no right to self-defense of the accused. Of course I believe it best each parent includes and considers & encourages the involvement of the other parent in the life of the...

    Championship Fathering
    by Carey Casey

    "Championship Fathering" is an effort to change the culture for today's children and the children of coming generations.

    We believe every child needs a dad they can count on. The research is clear: children thrive when they have an involved father—someone who loves them, knows them, guides them, and helps them achieve their destiny. At the National Center for Fathering, we inspire and equip men to be the involved fathers, grandfathers and father figures their children need.

    Championship Fathers aren't perfect. They just keep practicing the three fundamentals of being an effective dad: loving, coaching, and modeling, encouraging, enlisting.

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