Shared parenting drive makes its way to Missouri Legislature
KANSAS CITY (AP) — Missouri lawmakers are considering a measure that's part of a growing national movement aimed at forcing judges to award equal custody to both divorcing parents.
A state Senate committee last week heard testimony on a shared parenting bill that would require courts to start with the assumption that both parents deserve equal time with their children.
Current state law requires only that judges award "significant, but not necessarily equal" periods of time with a child.
Supporters of the bill say that in cases where both parents are equally deserving of custody, courts usually award physical custody to the mother.
Critics counter that shared parenting might make sense on an emotional level, but many factors make mandated equal time impractical or even dangerous for the children.