Considering Kids? A Mass. Man Offers This Advice on Divorce and Child Custody

by Admin on February 12, 2013

A guest speaker at Berkshire Community College in Northern Berkshire, Massachusetts recently had some interesting marriage and divorce advice to pass along to male students, their sons, grandsons, nephews — basically any male descendants and all male relations.

Rinaldo Del Gallo wrote about his speech in a local op-ed, and largely focused on the consequences of divorce when children are involved. Del Gallo began by describing the difficulty men usually have in obtaining custody of the children — courts usually rule in favor of the female. He pointed out the following:

“Most visitation orders men “win” in contested cases are in the neighborhood of getting your child every other weekend and a few hours every Wednesday — judgments vary, but this is the norm,” Del Gallo said.

He stated that even without custody, visitation rights are minimal, and because what the mother does is usually considered to be done in the child’s best interests, the mother can easily move away.

“Courts routinely allow “move-aways” simply for better jobs, new boyfriends or just to give the women a sense of a “fresh start,” Del Gallo said. “Move-aways do not remotely require exigent circumstances.”

But what Del Gallo cautions more so than the challenges in obtaining custody of children, is the cost of child support. Del Gallo claimed that child support can leave fathers destitute, since it typically costs about a third or more of their take-home pay.

“For instance, in Massachusetts, a man who has two children who makes $1,000 per week will usually pay about 30 percent of their income in taxes (income, sales, property, etc.) according to the Tax Foundation,” he claimed. “Thus, after-tax income would be about $700. Child support would be $300, thus they would be trying to live off of $400 to pay for rent, bills, student loans, etc. A person making $500 per week with two children (roughly $350 per week after taxes) pays $149 in child support, leaving $201 to live on.”

Child support orders usually do little in the favor of the fathers and are not easily altered:

“It is notoriously difficult to lower child support due to loss of income. Child support orders cannot be retroactively modified to affect moneys already owed, limitations on garnishment are laughable and child support cannot be discharged in bankruptcy. If you fall behind, you may lose your drivers license.”

ist2_1685710-prenuptial-agreementHe also stated that prenuptial agreements hold little legal merit in the face of all this.

Del Gallo ends his bulleted argument with this simple advice for young men:

“Unless you are willing to accept a 50 percent possibility that you will become a non-custodial parent paying one-third of your after-tax income in child support to visit your child every other weekend and a few hours one day a week, you should not have a child.”

Thailand divorce lawyers note that the Thai Court does not seem as prejudicial to men’s rights as the U.S. Courts described by Del Gallo.  In Thailand, prenuptial agreements are routinely followed and the court requires a social worker to interview parents before making decisions regarding child custody.  Further, awards for alimony in Thailand are much less than they are in the U.S. Courts.

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