Arizona law allows for a number of different child custody arrangements pursuant to Arizona law. These range from scenarios in which one parent has primary residential custody to situations in which parents share custody of a child or children equally. There are benefits derived from different custodial arrangements. A recent study reveals that equal custody arrangements appear to narrow the gender pay gap.
Unequal custody arrangements tend to leave women worse off financially
A pervasive misconception is that an unequal custodial arrangement in which a mother has primary child custody leaves her in a better position financially. The presumption is that there is a financial benefit to be realized through child support payments that outpace whatever monetary loss a woman experiences in the workplace.
The recent study undertaken by Emma Johnson reveals that the average child custody order in the United States is $480 per month when a mother has primary custody. Despite that being the average order, the average amount paid is $287 monthly. The study concludes that the amount paid in child support does not cover the pay gap experienced by a woman who would be able to work more and enjoy other employment benefits if custody was equally shared with the father.
Equal custody financially benefits mother and child
The amount of money a woman appears to be able to earn in an equal child custody arrangement is not nominal, according to the referenced study. The study concludes that a woman is 325% more likely to earn $100,000 when contrasted with a mother who has primary child custody.
The best interest of a child standard governs custody decisions in Arizona. When considering the best interests of a minor in developing a child custody arrangement, optimizing access of both parents to a child is a primary factor. Additionally, enhancing available income for the family is oftentimes an important consideration as well.