In divorce, people spend more time and money fighting about kids than anything else.
And for good reason: kids are the most important thing in a parent’s life.
They are the reason we work so hard. Kids are our “why.”
In Utah, 50/50 custody is becoming more popular all the time.
It’s the idea that parents share custody and time with their kids equally.
50/50 custody still isn’t the norm, though, which means if you want to get 50/50 custody, you need to do certain things to up your chances.
2 Best Things You Can Do for 50/50
There are many, many things you could do to up your chance at 50/50 custody, but I want to distill things down and share with you the 2 things that I’ve found to be most successful.
Here they are:
- Be Really Involved in Your Kids’ Lives.
If you want 50/50 time with your kids, you need to act like you want to have 50/50 time with your kids.
This means you need to be really involved in your kids’ lives.
Do homework with them. Read to them. Pray with them at night. Get them ready for school in the morning. Take them to soccer and dance. Go to parent–teacher conferences. Take them to doctor and dentist appointments. Know who their teachers and friends are. Know their favorite books and shows.
If you aren’t involved in your kids’ lives now, it will come out during your divorce, and the chance of getting 50/50 custody will be pretty slim.
On the other hand, if you have been involved with your kids, then that will come out as well, and you will have a much better chance at getting 50/50.
- Don’t Move Out of the House when You Separate.
So often, when people decide to divorce (i.e., separate), one spouse asks (more like tells) the other spouse to move out.
If your spouse asks you to move out, and you want 50/50 custody, or anything like it, don’t move out.
Sleep on the couch. Sleep in the basement. Sleep in the spare bedroom. Just don’t move out.
Here’s why: when you move out, you aren’t around the kids all day every day, but your spouse is, so you’ve set a precedent for custody that is not 50/50. Instead, the precedent is seriously skewed in your spouse’s favor.
(Note: if your spouse says you will share 50/50 custody after you move out, don’t chance it. Our experience has been that the spouse who stays in the home rarely follows through on that promise. After you move out, there will always be some excuse why 50/50 doesn’t work and your spouse needs 90% of the time with the kids.)
Now, I realize that staying in the home after deciding to divorce is awkward and stressful, but think of it as an investment in your future and your kids’ futures.
Here’s the bottom line: if you want 50/50 custody, do not move out of the house when you separate.
Last thing: if you have already moved out if the house and you want 50/50 custody, move back in. Seriously, move back in today.
Call Brown Family Law
If you find yourself facing a Utah divorce, please call 801.685.9999 for a legal in-person consultation, or use our online scheduling tool.