Studies show that gender bias continues
In divorce court, gender bias often negatively impacts men. Courts often show a tendency to put children with their mothers instead of their fathers, rather than giving each equal ground.
This has been changing over the years. There has been a movement toward more equal treatment. But studies show that this mindset has not yet entirely been eliminated.
Some have said that it puts an unfair burden of proof on fathers. When they show up in court, the court wants them to prove that they should have custody rights, that they can be good parents, and that they can take care of the kids.
The same isn't always true for women. Some officials just assume they can do all of those things naturally. Only in cases in which it is proved otherwise do they lose that ground.
For example, one study polled judges and gave them a simple statement, which was as follows:
"I believe young children belong with their mother."
The study asked them if they agreed with that or not. Stunningly, most of them did. A full 56 percent agreed.
Some did say that they couldn't make a judgement on that statement alone, that every case was different and that they'd need to know far more about the mother, the father and the kids. However, those judges who took that fair and just viewpoint were in the minority.
This isn't to paint all judges in a bad light, as many are fair and have the proper outlook, giving equal footing to both parents. But it is important for fathers to know what challenges they face so they can be prepared.
Source: National Parents Organization, "Studies Show Judicial Bias Against Dads," Robert Franklin, accessed Sep. 29, 2017