This collection of twelve items consists of Dr. Warshak’s publications relevant to father custody, joint custody, mother custody, and children’s role in custody decisions. The collection includes three journal articles, a law review article, a brief book chapter, an article published by the American Bar Association, a video, four papers based on speeches, and a transcript of testimony to the U.S. Commission on Child and Family Welfare. Continue reading
Poisoning Parent-Child Relationships Through the Manipulation of Names
Manipulating names can change the way children relate to and identify with their parents. Some parents use pejorative labels to refer to the target of alienation, encourage the children to refer to a parent by first name, or refer to the children by new names that mask their relationship to the other parent. This paper describes how such practices influence children to align with one parent against the other, how parents’ responses mediate the harmful Continue reading
Social Science and Parenting Plans for Young Children: A Consensus Report
When parents are married, they generally share the care of their babies —diapering, feeding, bathing, putting to bed, soothing in the middle of the night, cuddling in the morning. But if parents separate or divorce, should children under four spend every
night in one home? Or will infants and toddlers benefit from spending overnight time in the care of each parent?
Securing Children’s Best Interests While Resisting the Lure of Simple Solutions
The best-interest-of-the-child standard for child custody policy and decisions has benefits and hazards, the latter related to the exercise of judicial discretion in custody disputes. This paper examines alternatives to the status quo, including the primary parent presumption, the approximation rule, shared parenting, an exact even split of custodial time, sole custody for couples labeled in high conflict or those with young children, the friendly parent presumption, Continue reading
In a Land Far, Far Away: Assessing Children’s Best Interests in International Relocation Cases
This paper focuses on international relocations, but much of it is highly relevant to domestic relocation cases and to cases in which there is a possibility that a parent will want to travel to, or move to, another country. The article discusses the importance of examining the stated and unstated reasons and motives for the proposed move, and lists some of the more compelling reasons that might justify a relocation. Continue reading
Managing Severe Cases of Parental Alienation
Managing Cases of Severe Parental Alienation, published by the State Bar of Texas, includes never-before-published material previously available only through Dr. Warshak’s trial testimony and consultation.
Parenting By The Clock: The Best-Interest-of-The-Child Standard, Judicial Discretion, and the American Law Institute’s “Approximation Rule”
The American Law Institute (ALI) proposes that in contested physical custody cases the court should allocate to each parent a proportion of the child’s time that approximates the proportion of time each spent performing caretaking functions in the past. Proposals from ALI strongly influence legislatures and judges. These articles analyze the “approximation rule” through the lens of child development research and conclude that the rule is unlikely to improve on the Continue reading
The Approximation Rule Survey: The American Law Institute’s Proposed Reform Misses the Target
The American Law Institute (ALI) proposed that in contested physical custody cases, the court should allocate to each parent a proportion of the child’s time that approximates the proportion of time each spent performing caretaking functions in the past. The rule is intended to function as a default presumption in disputes decided by a court and as a backdrop for pre-trial negotiations. Proponents of the approximation rule assume that the adoption of the rule, by Continue reading
Parental Alienation Among College Students
This article reports the results of a survey of college students regarding their parents’ alienating behavior and the status of the students current relationship with each parent. The students reported a relatively high incidence of alienating behavior by divorced parents, both fathers and mothers.
The finding that 29% of the college students from divorced homes were alienated from a parent supports the importance of addressing Continue reading
Alienating Audiences from Innovation: The Perils of Polemics, Ideology, and Innuendo
This article discusses the importance of balancing careful scrutiny with openness to new ideas when judging innovative programs like Family Bridges. Dr. Warshak proposes that judicial responses to children who reject a parent are best governed by a multi-factor individualized approach. He shows how a presumption that allows children and one parent to regulate the other parent’s access to the children is unsupported by research. A custody decision based