Fathers in Pennsylvania may feel overwhelmed by issues around child support and visitation. They should make sure they understand any court papers they are served dealing with these matters. Even though receiving these documents might be an emotional experience, it is important that fathers keep calm. Lashing out at the mother over the phone or email is likely to be documented and can count against them.
After reviewing the paperwork, fathers may want to consult an attorney about anything that they do not understand or to discuss what their next move should be. Many fathers may put off addressing the issues directly, but if they simply ignore the opportunity to respond, then the mothers are likely to get the arrangement that they ask for. This might also be an opportunity for fathers to ask for modifications to support or visitation if they are unhappy with their arrangements. Fathers can also contact organizations that specialize in helping men in these situations such as Father Matters.
Fathers should also realize that there can be many advantages to putting an agreement in writing. It can cut down on conflict and gives them something to fall back on if the other parent violates the agreement.
Parents should remember that if they want to make changes to custody, visitation or support, they must go through legal channels to do so. A parent cannot simply decide to pay less child support because of a job loss or for some other reason. In these circumstances, it is important to return to court to ask that orders be modified. Fathers who are hoping to get more visitation time with their children or fight an effort to reduce their custody or visitation time should do things to demonstrate how actively involved they are in their children's lives.