A Nebraska state senator has introduced a bill that would encourage family court judges to favor parenting plans calling for at least 35% of the child’s time to be spent with the non-custodial parent. You can read more about it on 1011.com. The bill would become applicable only if the parents are unable to agree on a plan of their own, and it would allow the judge to order less parenting for the non-custodial parent if circumstances warrant.
This one worries me a bit less than some of the blunderbuss proposals that lawmakers have tended to throw around. The average standard visitation used in my state, for example, calls for 27% of the child’s time to be spent with the non-custodial parent. Simply by adding a Wednesday night visitation – from 3:00 pm until 8:00 am the next morning – parents could bring the percentage to 37% and comply with the bill. And this is a typical ask of non-custodial parents who want a little extra time that can easily become part of the child’s routine when both parents live reasonably close to the child’s school.