Child custody is one of the most emotionally charged and challenging aspects of any divorce. Even if two married people no longer love or care for each other, they almost always still want what's best for their kids, and the prospect of not spending every day with them or missing major milestones can be emotionally devastating. While many states aim to give both parents equal access to children by making 50/50 custody the default option, there are certain complications that can prevent a parent from being fully involved in their kids' lives.
Among the most common reasons parents are denied 50/50 custody include substance abuse, child neglect, emotional abuse, unsafe living conditions, parental alienation, intentionally harming the child's relationship with the other parent, and violation of court orders. In extreme cases – such as domestic violence, sexual abuse, child abduction, or a parent's incarceration – a parent may be denied any type of visitation with their child. The recent high-profile divorce between Kanye West and Kim Kardashian offers another lesson for parents in the midst of a split.
Why Kanye Faces an Uphill Custody Battle
Kim and Kanye have four children together, and they were married for more than six years before Kim filed for divorce in February, citing irreconcilable differences. Around this time, the rapper made one big mistake: He moved to Wyoming from the family's primary residence in Los Angeles, giving him limited access to his children and little involvement in their daily lives. Meanwhile, the kids have continued to live with Kim. Kanye's decision to abandon his family will leave him with an uphill battle when it comes to attaining 50/50 custody, as the courts will see this as evidence of his instability.
In addition to Kanye's poor choice to move several states away from his children, he has also suffered from highly publicized mental health struggles, including mania, depression, and bipolar disorder. Since family courts always consider what is in the best interest of the children, Kanye's mental health is likely to be a factor in any custody ruling. He will need to verify that he is following his doctors' recommendations, adhering to treatment regimens, and taking his medication as prescribed so he can provide a stable home.
Are You Getting Divorced and Facing a Custody Battle?
It can be painful to acknowledge that you may have made certain decisions that could harm your chances at 50/50 custody of your children following a divorce. However, ignoring or denying this reality isn't going to help you in court – instead, what you need to do is fight, because there's nothing more important than being involved in your children's lives. An experienced family law attorney can help you navigate the complexities of the legal system and have the best shot at maintaining a full and thriving relationship with your kids.
Joseph D. Lento is an experienced family law attorney who has helped countless clients through difficult divorce and custody hearings, making bad situations better for countless families across Pennsylvania. Call 888-535-3686 today to schedule a consultation.