If the parties can't come to a mutually acceptable agreement, the court will order whatever the court feels is in the children's best interest. While the default arrangement is for the parents to have equal time (especially where infants are not involved), this is not universally applied, since every child could potentially have their unique needs and every parent their unique flaws or challenges.
If you can't agree between yourselves, why not try mediation? This is what the court would order you to do anyway, and if you come to an agreement at mediation that you can both live with, then this is better than having a stranger (i.e. the judge) dictate the arrangements for you.
Again, to be clear: The court would order you to mediation, so why not give it a try on your own initiate?
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It is possible that the court will give a father 50% physical custody of the children. The court will look at the facts, review the mediator's report, and make a determination regarding what is in the best interest of the children. A good portion of the decision may depend on who historically has spend the majority of time nurturing and raising the children in the past.
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The other answers are good. I would add that if you want to have a lot of time with your kids, it will be helpful to focus not on the percentage, but on the actual time share plan. Get a calendar and mark out times when it will make sense for your kids to be with you and when they should be with the other parent and see how you can maximize your time. When you focus on the timeshare percentage, it sounds to the attorneys, mediators, and the judges like you are focused on minimizing your support obligation.
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You may want to consider consulting with a family law attorney on a limited scope basis in lieu of a paralegal service since you are stuck and frustrated. Parenting plans need to make sense for all of the parties. If it is appropriate in your case, then 50-50 should be your goal. Your wife will need to tell you and the court why she is adamant on not giving you 50%. You state that the only reason you can think of is custody payment/child support. Don't think and guess why she feels this way, because you need to find out. The judge is going to want to know. Many people don't want to agree to 50% due to money, and this situation comes up frequently in custody cases. You will need a strong declaration to the court articulating why the court should order a 50% or whatever plan you believe is in the best interest of the children.
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