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Military mom seeks to pass law regarding custody issues

When parents determine that it is time to call it quits in a marriage, this could lead to numerous issues that need to be addressed. The decision-making process could be complicated and constrained when one or both parents are in the military. Child custody issues usually present themselves, especially when one parent is away for work or even on deployment. This could lead to disputes concerning their parental rights and parenting time.

A military divorce is not an easy process to go through. Parents across the nation might experience additional hardships during a custody battle due to their military life. Furthermore, legislation passed within the state could help address these issues, which could lead to a more optimal and fair arrangement. Currently, in New Mexico, a single mother employed by the National Guard is working to draft legislation that would protect the parental rights of service members during deployment.

This effort began after the hardships endured by a father in the Navy. He could lose custody of his daughter due to his deployment and inability to appear in court. The judge would not allow him to appear via video conference because it does not say it in the law that a service member could do that during deployment.

The new law being devised would include language that would allow for video conferencing for deployed parents. Moreover, the law would also grant them the right to assign parental rights to a grandparent during deployment. This could allow joint custody arrangements to remain intact even though a parent is deployed.

Ensuring parental rights are honored and proper parenting time is awarded is a major concern in custody disputes involving service members in the military. Several disputes could occur as a result, and those involved should seek guidance about their options. The focus should always remain on the best interest of the child, but reaching a fair arrangement often means being flexible for the parent that is being deployed, but that isn't always easily achieved.

Source: KOAT, "Custody battle similar to Navy's Matthew Hindes possible in New Mexico," Megan Cruz, June 23, 2014

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