While there are a number of two-parent households in York County, there are an increasing number of couples splitting up and sharing custody of their children. Oftentimes, the court will give one parent primary custody instead of dividing the time equally and, more often than not, it is the mother who receives primary custody. When that happens, the father will be forced to pay child support.
This is by no means a constant. There are plenty of fathers who receive primary custody and will receive child support payments from their ex-wives. Ultimately, however, in most cases, one parent will be paying the other to help cover the costs of the child’s care. Even if it is hard to pay an ex, these payments truly are in the child’s best interest.
Most parents realize that and pay the child support they owe, but that didn’t stop the director of the York County Domestic Relations agency from texting many men the message “Looking for the ideal Father’s Day gift? Make a child support payment!!!!” Some of the men who received this text did not have any outstanding child support payments.
Though the director said that the message went out to both men and women and that a similar message will be going out near Mother’s Day, it begs the question of whether she assumes fathers do nothing more than pay for their children. Of course, there are a number of fathers who play active roles in their children’s lives, on top of paying monthly child support. Sadly, not everyone sees that.
In order for the family law system to work well in Pennsylvania, courts and county administrators need to get rid of any prejudice they have against fathers.
Source: NBC 10, “Text Tells Dads to Pay Child Support as “Ideal Father’s Day Gift”,” June 6, 2014