Equal parenting time is best for families and teenagers

Due to legal reforms, equal parenting time (EPT) laws in Spain now apply to approximately 40% of all divorces, with likely implications for family outcomes and teenagers’ risky behavior.

Consistent with theories of bargaining power within marriage, researchers find that EPT laws decrease contentious and wife-initiated divorces and increase the employment of mothers relative to fathers.

An analysis of drug use and family relationships, among 165,000 teenagers, further shows that EPT laws significantly decrease risky behavior by teenagers, especially boys, who claim to have better relationships with their father, although more unclear norms for behavior.

The research results have international implications. In the United States equal parenting time (EPT) by law is already the reality in several states such as Arizona, Kentucky and West Virginia with positive results. More than half of the US states are currently considering to adopt EPT laws. 

Equal parenting time have been the norm in most nordic countries in daily life and is also the law in Belgium. All with positive results in both research and daily life for children and families in the moderne society.

We expect that equal parenting time will be the standard by law in most developed countries within athe next few years. The research results and experiences are the same all over the world and very positive on childrens mental health, less family conflicts and less money used by society for later social support.

Equal parenting time as the basic assumption by law is simply one of the best and most importance investments in children and society we can make today!  

Read the full research The impact of equal parenting time laws on family outcomes and risky behavior by teenagers: Evidence from Spain by Daniel Fernández-Kranz and Natalia Nollenberger, from the IE University in the Journal of Economic Behavior & Organization 195(2):303-325 in March 2022.