The majority of custody cases in California end with joint custody. The reason why this is such a common custody situation is that the court will do what is in the best interest of the child. Generally speaking, children do best when both parents are actively involved with raising them, even if the parents are not married

However, if one parent has a history of abuse, it stands to logic that the abusive parent would lose custody of the children. Despite this, this is not always how the situation works out. According to Forbes Magazine, if women claim abuse on the part of their male partner, it is common for the male partner to allege parental alienation and this often ends up with the woman losing custody of children.

What is parental alienation?

The term parental alienation has its origins in the 1980s. A prominent child psychologist claimed that mothers would falsely accuse fathers of sexual abuse in order to ensure sole custody of any children. In the modern era, many psychologists rebuke this claim, stating a lack of evidence.

However, the power of parental alienation remains. A recent study cited by Forbes shows that if the mother claims abuse and the father alleges parental alienation, the mother loses custody of children nearly half of the time.

Is there anything I can do against a parental alienation claim?

Statistically, it is safer for mothers to not make child abuse claims against fathers, even if the child abuse is real. Whether or not it is a good idea for you to claim abuse against an ex-spouse in order to gain custody of children depends heavily on the case and mitigating circumstances.