Additionally, the Commission is required to study the adverse effects of custody litigation on children and how to minimize them; how to maximize the involvement of both parents in the lives of their children; the pros and cons of joint physical custody; and to evaluate the governing statutes in other states, and consider whether Maryland law needs a statute specific to child custody decisions. Gender discrimination, current case management systems, training for judges, and the effects of domestic violence on custody determinations will also be reviewed. By the end of this year, the Commission is to have held five hearings around the State to encourage public input and participation concerning child custody decision-making in Maryland.
What will this mean for families facing custody disputes? If the guidelines set forth in the current case law are codified, the courts, legal community, and families will have clear factors for determining custody issues, which could streamline litigation making custody litigation less costly, both emotionally and financially for parents and their children.