Is Shared Parenting the Future for Ohio’s Divorce Court?
The article below, written by Rita Price published by The Columbus Dispatch, delves into new default standards in child custody as it relates to divorce or separation. Kentucky recently passed a statute that is being referred to as, “the country’s strongest shared-parenting legislation ever.” This new Kentucky statute states that the court’s new default standard in regard to child custody is that parents should share equal time or essentially 50/50 parenting. This new standard is in lieu of the outdated standard that one parent is awarded primary custody which usually results in the non-primary custodian to have custody of the child maybe 20% of the time. A judge can still make exceptions to this default, for example, if a parent has a history of violence, chemical dependency, and physical and mental well being of the parent. Also this default standard really only comes into play should the parents not be able to agree on the custody arrangement between themselves. There are three counties in the state of Ohio that are following in Kentucky’s footsteps; Ashtabula, Jefferson, and Tuscarawas. Those who currently reside in the aforementioned counties are able to re-open their old cases and petition for shared parenting. So far this new default standard seems to be met with positive feedback. Could this be the future of child custody for all of Ohio?