What are the chances of a father winning custody

There is a common belief that in custody disputes the law prefers mothers instead of the fathers. Yet,  this is not the case. The law does not give preference based on sex. Thus, the chances of a father winning custody is the same as the chances of a mother winning custody. 

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Primary Caretaker/Caregiver Rule

Whether you are the father or the mother has little impact whether you will get custody of your child. What matters is who is the primary caretaker/caregiver of the child. If the father is the primary caretaker then his chances of winning custody goes up. If the mother is the primary caregiver, then her chances of winning custody goes up. Thus, the sex of the parent is not relevant. 

Historical reasons 

Historically, mothers have assumed more of the care taking role within the family unit. In the modern age, things are changing. Many fathers are now primary caretakers since the father is the parent who changes diapers, takes the child to school and cooks while the mother goes out and works to support the family financially. Therefore, as society is changing the perception that the law favors mothers over father in child custody disputes will change as well.


As stated, the primary caretaker rule is only one factor the court will consider in determining whether you will get custody of your child. So, talk to a local child custody lawyer to discuss other factors the court may consider for your specific case. 

Related Readings

Child Custody Modification

Child Custody Modification

In California, modifying a child custody order requires a proof of significant change in circumstances. However, like most rules in the legal field, this rule also comes with important exceptions. Here, I will discuss some of those exceptions. However, first I will discuss where the change in circumstances rule comes from and why it exists in child custody cases.

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