Transcript Excerpts of Judge Max Gors' comments on HB1302 - provided to House State Affairs Committee on 2/4/2002
Judge Max Gors
I am a member of -- and co-chairman of a group called “Committee on reasonable child custody and visitation” which was established by an executive order on January 10 of this year by the governor.
We are trying to deal with what we can do, not what we can't do. The purpose of the legislation that's being proposed to you is to establish initial custody when a divorce is filed and to establish standard guidelines.
Citizens, people who have been divorced and who have had custody and visitation disputes tell us that if there was something in place on the first day so that they were at least guaranteed a minimum, it would solve a lot of problems because a lot of people would be happy with the standard guidelines
The initial custody would be given to the person who has been the primary caregiver during the 30 days prior to the filing. Now what this does, is it gives everybody some rights…
Bill Peterson: …tell us what in your bill contains elements of shared parenting…
Max Gors: …this bill does not address the concept of shared parenting. Of course that concept works when people are willing to share...
Matt Michels: … who would then under that ruling have custody?
Max Gors - I think it is fair to say that in almost every situation we can figure out who is the primary caregiver. Evidence would be who makes the meals, who washes the clothes, who changes the diapers. It's the same kind of decision we make now when we decide who the primary caregiver is when we're awarding interim custody.
Matt Michels: I don't meet that criterion and I'm married. (Group laughter)