On a grading scale created by the National Parents Organization, Kentucky received an “A” for its joint-parenting law. Signed into effect on April 26, 2018, House Bill 528 created the shared-parenting requirement. Each parent must agree to spend equal time with his or her children after a divorce. The law has so far proven itself a success.
According to the Courier-Journal, court cases involving family conflicts have reduced by 11% since the law’s passage. The court also had fewer claims involving domestic violence issues. This points to more separating parents deciding to amicably agree upon a custody and visitation schedule. The trend shows a greater tendency to meet each family member’s needs.
Studies have shown that children who spend time and develop a relationship with each of their parents generally become more productive adults. Even though split-apart families live in different homes, a child’s esteem, studying habits and communication skills benefit from interacting with each parent on a regular basis.
Shared parenting has improved over several years
The Bluegrass State’s pinnacle rating did not occur overnight. It took several years for the state to increase its grade from a “D-” to an “A.” When the NPO began its research into shared-parenting laws and implemented its grading system in 2014, Kentucky lagged behind other states.
In 2019, however, the Bluegrass State made it to the top, and now sets an example for other legislatures to follow. As noted in the report on the NPO’s website, equal shared parenting ensures children’s well-being after a divorce. When both parents can plan to spend time with their children, the court’s process of awarding custody, and determining a family’s financial support, tends to proceed smoothly.
Visitation schedules and equal parenting rights
Before finalizing a divorce, both parents and their children may wish to discuss a visitation schedule that works for them. Instead of a family court judge ordering custody and visitation rights, parents who both have a fair say in determining their rights may amicably plan for the benefit of their children.