Men are increasingly receiving custody of their children, and single-father families with children are growing at a faster rate than even single-mother families. However, many observers still believe that custodial fathers are small in number. Indeed, there are a number of myths concerning custodial fathers, myths that are dispelled by empirical data. The authors examine data from the Current Population Survey, the Survey of Income and Program Participation, and Wisconsin court records, and determine that many assumptions about custodial fathers are simply not true. Many child support policies are founded on misconceptions about custodial fathers and custody arrangements themselves, especially the misconception that only mothers gain custody of their children. The authors argue that current child support policies should be reexamined to ensure that they follow the same principles when the custodial parent is the father as when the custodial parent is the mother. (Author abstract)
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