Dependency Docket Bench Card, Ohio State Supreme Court, Source Digital Public Library of America (https://dp.la/item/e9eeb7b58aac3e0d3630ac5760aa3e99) (PD)
You are a divorced mother of three, working part-time to make ends meet. You have custody of the children your husband expressed no interest in, even before the marriage ended. You receive no alimony and little child support since he, also, managed to hide assets at the time of the divorce.
Your ex and his new wife now feel custody would be cheaper. Their ploy for gaining custody is to accuse you of neglect. Nothing could be further from the truth. But you have to hire a lawyer to defend yourself, and wind up putting the $10,000 retainer on your credit card.
- Although there are times divorce is the best option, divorced women are more likely than men to receive public assistance, live without health insurance, and have less earning potential [1A].
- 29% of custodial mothers live in poverty, as compared with 16.7% of custodial fathers [1B].
- Only 43.5% of custodial parents receive the full amount of child support [1C]. The aggregate amount of child support due in 2015 was $33.7 billion.
- Children of divorced parents are 1.5 – 2 times more likely to end up living in poverty than children still living with both parents .
The lengths to which a good and loving parent may be forced to go, in order to defend against false allegations of abuse are troubling [3A].
A lack of financial resources will exacerbate such a situation. An attorney is not likely to continue with representation in the absence of payment. Necessary psychological evaluation of a child in such a case can cost money, as well.
Unfortunately, the better funded (and less scrupulous) parent often has the upper hand. The falsely accused parent with fewer resources may find herself or himself attempting to prove a negative not only in a custody case, but a simultaneous Dept. of Human Services investigation and criminal action. Continue reading