What are my rights as a father in Nebraska?
There's no denying a gender bias exists in the court system. Mothers have an advantage in a parenting-time dispute, and fathers still do not get a fair chance to exercise their rights as a father. The feeling of having to prove the mother is unfit reflects the history of fathers' role as breadwinners and mothers' as the homemaker.
Society is changing, and women are increasing their presence in roles typically held by men. In turn, more men are transitioning into the home and nurturer role. The court system, however, has unfortunately not kept up with the chagces in the workforce and in the home.
Effect of a father in a child's life
Traditionally, the father is the parent who goes out into the workforce while the mother stays home and cares for the children. Because of this, mothers have had an advantage when it comes to family and child custody issues in the court system. The role a father has in his child's life has been a topic of discussion in many custody decisions as they are equally capable to care for and nurture their children.
Researchers suggest that when fathers are actively involved with their children, children do better and it positively impacts child development. If that sounds like a no-brainer, rest assured that it is not. Research on fatherhood is evolving and illustrates how men can both help and hurt their children.
Establishing paternity in Nebraska
Fathers must establish paternity as the first step to upholding their parental rights. This is also important so that your child can seek out the benefits they are entitled to, coming from both their mother and father under state law. Nebraska has two ways in which parents can establish a child's paternity, including a voluntary process and an involuntary process that includes a court order and a possible DNA test. The parent's dynamic and unique circumstances determine which method to use.
After establishing paternity, the judge will move into a child custody case. Many states, including Nebraska, base custody on the best interests of the child. This standard says the custody decisions need to support the best interest of the children involved in the case.
When joint custody is not an option, the state assigns one parent as the primary custodial parent. They are mainly responsible for caring for the child, and the child lives with them most of the time. The non-custodial parent will typically have to pay child support to help financially support the child. No matter if it is the mother or father, the custodial parent has the right to collect child support from the other parent.