Advertisement
If you have a new account but are having problems posting or verifying your account, please email us on hello@boards.ie for help. Thanks :)
Hello all! Please ensure that you are posting a new thread or question in the appropriate forum. The Feedback forum is overwhelmed with questions that are having to be moved elsewhere. If you need help to verify your account contact hello@boards.ie

50:50 shared parenting: has any man ever been awarded it by an Irish court?

Options
  • 22-05-2022 5:16pm
    #1
    Posts: 0


    Has anybody successfully got a shared parenting arrangement in an Irish court where each parent does 50% of the parenting time? I'm obviously not talking about the common legal fiction of "joint custody", where actual parenting could be distributed 90%/10% in favour of the woman, or its variants. I'm talking a full, equitable situation where each parent gets 50% of parenting. Sometimes termed 'joint physical custody'.

    If so, how has it worked in Irish law? For instance, is it 4 nights (parent 1)/3 nights (parent 2)/3 nights (parent 1)/4 nights (parent 2), etc, or is it one week in one parent's and the following week in the other's? Just how likely could it be for a father to get equal parenting of his children in the courts of this State? The statistics are not, unsurprisingly, made public by the Courts' Service.

    I was reading this fascinating, recent study, from March 2022, of shared parenting in Spain, where due to legal changes by progressive Spanish legislators some 40% of all divorces now entail 50:50 shared parenting. In Sweden, there is a similar rate of 40% (https://fnf.org.uk/campaigns/research/shared-parenting-research#faqnoanchor). Both One Family and Treoir have been petitioning the government of this State for many years to legislate for it, but they refuse, just as they refuse to reform the abomination of humanity that is the family courts of this State. The evidence for 50:50 parenting being in the greater interest of the children is overwhelming, and it is an awful negligence by our legislators that they do not read the mounting evidence against giving one parent (almost invariably the mother) the vast majority of parenting time:

    Daniel Fernandez & Kranz Natalia Nollenberger, 'The impact of equal parenting time laws on family outcomes and risky behavior by teenagers: Evidence from Spain' [https://www.sciencedirect.com/science/article/abs/pii/S0167268122000075?via%3Dihub]





Comments

  • Registered Users Posts: 795 ✭✭✭CreadanLady


    The reason for it the government wanting to keep the status quo is that almost universally, the mother of the children is the primary carer in reality, regardless of what it may say on paper. Mothers do the vast majority of heavy lifting with children, especially when they are small, and when it all goes south, it practically always the mother literally left holding the baby. The court's first priority is looking after the best interests of the children, and the best interests of a child are served by their mother being the primary carer, unless there is a very compelling reason why she should not be, ie, severe and persistent mental instability, drug addictions or violent tendencies that have not improved even after repeated interventions from multiple agencies.

    I think the Irish system essentially recognises the reality of difficult family situations.

    The MFV Creadan Lady is a mussel dredger from Dunmore East.



  • Posts: 0 [Deleted User]


    The default starting position when parents separate should be assumed to be 50:50 and then shared custody arrangements adapted around the child's needs - not the parents'.

    "Joint physical custody" is not, and should not, be a one size fits all with the primary goal that each parent gets 50% of child's time. That's not child-centric. That's parent-centric. It's meeting the parent's needs, not the child's.

    For 50:50 joint custody to work it really needs separated parents to commit to remain living within a reasonable distance of other's homes, kids schools and friends, which is not always possible either.

    "Joint physical custody" does not have to be exactly 50:50. It can be 60:40 or 70:30 or any ratio in between once it works for the kids - it's still joint custody.



  • Registered Users Posts: 345 ✭✭Senature


    Surely regular, continual care from each parent is what's in the best interest of the child/ren, unless one of the parents is unable to provide this for some reason.

    There seems to be a societal assumption that if a father tries to have equal access to their child, there must be a negative reason such as one upmanship, trying to pay less maintenance, or it is somehow seen as not in the best interests of the child.

    Imagine mothers were generally viewed that way, it would rightly be seen as misogynistic and awful. So it shouldn't be ok to assume this about fathers at all.



  • Posts: 0 [Deleted User]


    Absolutely.

    Emphasis on "regular, continual care" though, not on making sure one parent has the exact same numbers of days / hours / minutes with the child as the other.

    Note that I personally avoid referring to "mother" or "father" in my posts if possible. I prefer to use the term "parent" (or sometimes custodial / non-custodial parent) as I do consider both as equally important in a child's life.

    Though I will offer my personal opinion that not enough Irish fathers look for 50:50 shared physical custody, to normalise it.



  • Registered Users Posts: 345 ✭✭Senature


    Well counting hours and minutes would be a bit ridiculous but even number of weekdays/weekends shouldn't be particularly difficult to achieve. I personally think that establishes a scenario that best allows the two new family units to set up successful independent lives which is far better for all involved in the long run.

    How horrible it is for mum to be left unable to develop her career as she could as she is designated to care for the children and is therefore dependent on money from Dad for decades.

    How awful for Dad to be reduced to a money making machine, stressed to the gills providing for two households and rarely getting to tuck his kids in at night time, collect them from school, bring them to sports etc.

    How sh1t for the kids to have two parents who are both stressed and struggling not to feel bitter about shouldering a totally unfair burden, despite there being different causes in each case.

    I agree more Dads should seek 50-50 but the odds are stacked against them. I think most assume it's not even a possibility so don't try. Also, the mother and her friends and family are likely to view this as Dad doing something totally horrific and awful. Who wants to be that guy?



  • Advertisement
  • Registered Users Posts: 2,240 ✭✭✭sprucemoose


    please join us in the year 2022 when you get a chance



  • Registered Users Posts: 1,527 ✭✭✭kaymin


    Who cares what her family and friends think. I currently have interim full custody of my son and will be seeking to retain that custody at the upcoming custody hearing. I am his father. Having said that I am interested to read the Spanish study about equal parenting (it's behind a paywall) but suspect the negative outcomes for teenage boys when reared by the mother is not so much due to there being only one parent involved but more due to the absence (usually involuntary) of the father and the discipline and guiding hand he provides.



  • Registered Users Posts: 118 ✭✭ahappychappy


    I dont have experience of Court awarded, but am witness to a couple of examples in real life. One set of parents work on a week on week off basis and the other set of parents work a flexible approach as both work shift. It really depends on the people, how the relationship ended and if they have the capacity to engage in mediation / discussions to identify what is best for the child.

    I have a flexible arrangement - (due to unfortunate illness father unable to have them for 50% ) so we work within a 30-40% basis - depending on his ability at the time.

    To be honest I think 50/50 may not suit every child - a lot of children need or want a primary base, this does tend to be the mother as from day one mothers generally take the brunt of the hands with the children so then it becomes the default. I believe everything should be based on the child - what is their needs and the adults should work within that. I like the concept of "nesting" - child has a home the parents move in and out, after all it is them who are the adults and they have more capacity to deal with the practicalities!

    The reference to the teenage boys behaviour and link to non present father is an interesting topic. As I said I dont have this situation and I completely appreciate there are many fathers fighting for access - which is a horrible injustice to the children involved.

    However, I have sadly seen many examples around me - fathers absent completely voluntary and have gone on to have second families and acquired severe amnesia It is horrible, it causes so much damage and continues to at each development of the child /teen as they begin to realize the parent is simply not bothered.

    In my opinion a teen boy, in this scenario, is missing seeing a man have respectful relationship (it doesn't need to be romantic), with their mother. We are still mammals and monkey see monkey do!



  • Registered Users Posts: 795 ✭✭✭CreadanLady


    I think the above account bears out the point I was making earlier on about the courts generally favouring the mother having primary custody, since it's reality that mother's do the bulk of the routine work and ultimately address left literally holding the baby

    The MFV Creadan Lady is a mussel dredger from Dunmore East.



  • Registered Users Posts: 6,958 ✭✭✭circadian


    Each case is different and I know myself that I do more of the parenting duties (school dropofs/pickups/homework/cooking/enrolling in clubs and activities/going to parties) than my significant other due to the fact that my job allows me to and hers is more restrictive. This is an increasingly common scenario.



  • Advertisement
  • Registered Users Posts: 795 ✭✭✭CreadanLady


    I don't doubt that such setups are more common now, but they would still be very much in a minority.

    And also, they are all well and good until there is a big falling out over something and then it would probably revert to mother being the primary carer.

    The MFV Creadan Lady is a mussel dredger from Dunmore East.



  • Posts: 0 [Deleted User]


    I currently have week on week off custody. I had to get it through the courts and it is still ongoing. I have been homeschooling my two children when they are with me and they attend primary school when they are not. The children love it, are well settled and are doing really well in school. The only issue is my ex does not want it as it affects her many financial requests in the upcoming divorce so that is my battle.



  • Registered Users Posts: 19 Two Hill


    Did you get this 50/50 agreed as a result of a section 47 report?



  • Posts: 0 [Deleted User]


    No and yes! I won a relocation order in the district court to have my children returned to my jurisdiction, she appealed to the circuit court. I got joint custody until the S47 was completed. During the progression of the S47 i was granted a year with the children but now the year is up and we had another review recently. I would not call it a review, i spoke for 20 minutes on how the children and my year was and now the report is about to be published. I am not hopeful given the review was organized without my knowledge and i had to invite my self along to it. My ex refused to speak in front of me so i had to leave the room so i can only imagine what was said. She requested the S47 at the appeal hearing to delay things so now i am heavily prejudiced as she can claim they are all settled in the new town they moved to even though the district court judge was highly scathing of her behavior and called it an abuse of her power as a mother.



  • Registered Users Posts: 19 Two Hill


    This does not sound a very fair appointment - sopposed to be a joint appointment. I would let it run its course and flag that your not happy with the way it was conducted if you need to. I have found process OK but extremely slow and frustrating.



  • Posts: 0 [Deleted User]


    I see i am discussing this with you on two threads so ill stick to this one. Last year my ex met with the psychologist before i did and when i had my meeting i was essentially fed a load of cobblers that was fed to her. I did not leave with much hope although their was no doubt that i was focused on the children. I asked for another meeting this time with my ex present. My game plan was just let her talk and defend my self when needed. She was told to stop trying to control me and low and behold i got another year with the children. This option was removed this time. both my children stated they wanted to stay with me for our weeks and the psychologist did say the children are doing really well and happy but my gut is telling me this is a stich up! Anyway its due to be published this week so lets see what happens.



  • Registered Users Posts: 19 Two Hill


    Here fingers crossed and I really hope it reads fairly toward you. The kids have endorsed you as a good parent so I'm sure it will. If she has been sticking knives in your back the kids will have outted that and told truth in their reports I would say. So see how it goes from here is best way.



  • Registered Users Posts: 5,239 ✭✭✭Widdensushi




  • Registered Users Posts: 479 ✭✭feelings


    The system is stacked against fathers in this country, that is why mothers are typically the primary carer. Women play the system wonderfully, as they know it is so stacked against fathers.

    Amazing how women want equality when it suits them but not when their marriage breaks down. Then they want it all, house, kids, maintenance, the clothes off your back and you living in a gutter. It's disgusting.

    /rant. But it is fact.



  • Registered Users Posts: 144 ✭✭Becks610


    A lot of the time a decision is made where women give up a lot of their careers and hence subsequent earning power and more importantly pension provision and some men don’t like having to give up any of their lifestyle when the relationship breaks. Some men (clearly like you) then see it as a money grab but if a woman ( or man) gives up their career to mind children obviously this needs to be taken into account.



  • Advertisement
  • Posts: 0 [Deleted User]




  • Registered Users Posts: 479 ✭✭feelings


    A lot of time a joint decision is made that one parent leave the workforce temporarily to care for their children. That is a choice, either or both parents make. In many cases, that stay at home parent (typically the woman) refuses to return to the workforce, as they enjoy their new lifestyle at home. This can put enormous financial pressure on the working parent and the family unit.

    Fair provision is an absolute must where a relationship breaks down. Unfortunately, it doesn't work like that in this country and it turns into a "money grab" as you say. "Fair" goes out the window. How do you put a 'price' on the time and memories the working parent has given up to financially support his or her family?

    With cases of 50/50 parenting for example, the working parent must make changes to their working and personal life. I have yet to hear of this being "taken into account" by any judge in any separation or divorce case. So while you say provision must be made for the stay at home parent (pensions etc), provision needs to be made for the working parent as well.



  • Registered Users Posts: 144 ✭✭Becks610


    understand it is hard to put a price on memories missed- similar but reverse- what about all the free time perhaps the working parent had! Provisions needs to be made for both but a lot of people see that as just a money grabber and as the poster said above - he labelled it all on women!!


    a fair balance needs to be achieved- it is hard tho cos can a child time really be split 50:50.



  • Posts: 0 [Deleted User]


    Refuses to return to the workplace? Or is unable too?

    In my experience stay at home parents - typically mothers - find it very difficult to get back into the workplace after a number of years out.

    A big gap labelled "stay at home parent" does not look very good on a CV and skills get outdated very, very quickly. Even after as little as 5 years out and training is most likely needed to bring skills up to date and pay will be at a much lower salary point.

    This sacrifice in career progression and salary by the parent who stays at home, also needs to be taken into account.



  • Posts: 0 [Deleted User]


    "In my experience stay at home parents - typically mothers - find it very difficult to get back into the workplace after a number of years out."


    In this economic environment, where there are shortages of staff across a very wide range of society? Not a chance. Perhaps, just perhaps, they are wily to the systen and if they sense their relationship is rocky especially they will be advised to sit tight with the "parenting" in order to get more money from their soon-to-be ex in any settlement?

    I'd like to see the statistics on the number of women who actually engage seriously with mediation. In my experience with a mother who works full time outside the family home, it was nothing but an attempted power grab: "the courts will favour me, the woman, so why bother giving anything in mediation but I have to make an appearance at mediation just to give the impression that I tried." And that was it in a nutshell - after a full seven months of waiting for LAB mediation - despite the irony that the male in this case did more of the parenting due to having a career with more child-friendly hours. It was a woman looking for gender rights from 1937 to the home and children, despite the reality that they work in a very traditionally "male" career in 2022. And Dublin especially is full of such women who want the system both ways. And, thus far, the judiciary continues to allow these mothers who work full-time outside the home in 2022 to claim the enormous rights of a full-time stay-at-home mother from 1937.

    Perhaps if our pre-modern family law system had a scintilla of openness and transparency about who gets what, people might engage seriously with mediation rather than depend on traditional gender discrimination?



  • Posts: 0 [Deleted User]


    Sorry Anamcheasta, I don't buy into your belief that every woman is some kind of a master manipulator always plotting 3 steps ahead and playing long games to be in the position to fleece her ex husband if the marriage goes south.

    It gets tiring reading you repeat the same rants over and over on every thread.

    You take a five or ten year gap out of the workplace to raise a few kids, then see how easy it is to get your foot back in the door of the workplace afterwards, competing against younger people with more relevant up-to-date skills (and no kids). And if you do, it certainly won't be at the same pay grade as your husband who has been working and progressing in their career all along.

    Post edited by [Deleted User] on


  • Registered Users Posts: 345 ✭✭Senature


    I don't think it's realistic nowadays for either parent to be a stay at home parent post-separation. Two homes to pay mortgage/rent for, double the utilities, furniture, renovation and maintenance exps etc. That's on top of the kids and parents being fed, clothed, schooled, dr, dentist etc etc.

    Arrangements where one parent is significantly more hands on while the other takes on more of the financial burden might be appropriate within a marriage or partnership, but results in far too much sacrifice on both sides if it continues post-separation. The parents are now two individuals who are likely to enter into new relationships and may go on to have other children. They need a set up that prioritises their independence along with providing for the needs of the existing children.



  • Posts: 0 [Deleted User]


    "Almost universally"? I'm not quite sure where you're living but it's certainly not south Dublin. Here, the vast majority of couples with young kids work outside the home. That is, by far, the norm. Just how many single incomes can afford the mortgages on properties here? The mothers might take six or eight months maternity leave before both parents share the responsibility for dropping the child into créche at 7am or so, and collecting her/him at 5pm or 6pm. That is, by far, the norm. A majority (52%) of solicitors today, for instance, are female - not exactly sounding like typical Irish mammy parenting material from 1937. But you can bet they'd claim it to get control over the family home and children.

    If they're lucky, they might have family to do the childminding, but it's the same thing: the child is not being parented by the mother as if it's 1937. Yet, mothers are demanding their cake and to eat it: rights of a mother in Dev's Ireland, but rights of a man in the corporate workforce in 2022. And when they succeed in keeping the family home based on their "primary parenting" claim, they essentially make the guy homeless/a tenant for life as he, obviously, could not purchase a house in the same area of south Dublin to provide a home for his children when his name remains on the so-called "family home". So, yes, it's quite a nasty hypocrisy with real victims from the so-called women's rights' eternal victimhood industry in Ireland in 2022.



  • Posts: 0 [Deleted User]


    What financial nirvana are these women living in where they can take five or ten years out to raise the kids? Seriously? And who pays the mortgage which two incomes previously needed to pay? Where are these women? Some nether region of rural Ireland where a single income can pay for a house? Life does not happen like that in Dublin anyway for any barely middle-class people with third-level education. All those homes which required one income to purchase in 1970 now require two incomes. That second income is needed to pay the mortgage so the woman gets back into the workforce and the couple pay for... childminders. That is the norm for most couples who live in areas where the jobs are, and thus where house prices require two incomes. Many of those women in the workforce have young kids. Did you ever wonder what happens to them in terms of childminding when those women are in the office?

    As for manipulation, any statistics on how many women in higher earning positions suddenly take unpaid parental leave when the marriage is falling apart so that they'll have a lower income and can suddenly show they are spending more time with the kids as the court date approaches? (my solicitor warned me about this unpaid leave stunt, and sure enough that is precisely what happened). And mediation for the same career-focused women is simply a box-ticking, time-delaying process because they have no incentive to actually concede anything for the simple reason that they reckon they'll get control of the children and family home from a judge by virtue of their gender. That's assuming their male spouse has the €30,000-plus required to go to the circuit court to challenge the privilege which career-focused women working outside the home still claim over the family home and kids.

    Post edited by [Deleted User] on


  • Advertisement
  • Registered Users Posts: 795 ✭✭✭CreadanLady


    No you misunderstand me. I fully recognise that very often both parents are working full time outside the home. However, notwithstanding that, the mother is still the primary carer in the vast, vast majority of cases. For example, if a child gets sick, it would usually be the mother who takes a day off of leaves work early to deal with it, the mother would be doing most of the day-to-day grunt work such as washing, making the childrens dinners and lunches, and so on. They are still the primary carer, even if not a stay the stay at home mother of DeValera's "Ireland that we dreamed of".

    The MFV Creadan Lady is a mussel dredger from Dunmore East.



Advertisement