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1 of 1 people found the following review helpful
5.0 out of 5 stars Best Guide for Fathers in a Child Custody Dispute
This book is the best book on the market for fathers going though a child custody dispute. It helped me out a lot. It's practical information and a really easy read. Jeffery leving is an expert on child custody issues. Fathers are often looked at as just providers, but this book gives dads a fighting chance in court. Fathers are just as important as mother to the growth...
Published on April 4 2007 by William Booker

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1 of 1 people found the following review helpful
2.0 out of 5 stars Advice Legit - Author (Hmmm)...
The advice this book offers has some points, but a word of caution: Lawyers are in business to MAKE MONEY. I personally find it over-promising, and somewhat confusing, for anyone to call themselves a "father's rights" attorney, (which sounds very wholesome and innocent), when divorce and custody proceedings, and most lawyers in general are NOT. As such, it is difficult to...
Published on April 12 2004


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1 of 1 people found the following review helpful
2.0 out of 5 stars Advice Legit - Author (Hmmm)..., April 12 2004
By A Customer
This review is from: Fathers' Rights: Hard-Hitting and Fair Advice for Every Father Involved in a Custody Dispute (Paperback)
The advice this book offers has some points, but a word of caution: Lawyers are in business to MAKE MONEY. I personally find it over-promising, and somewhat confusing, for anyone to call themselves a "father's rights" attorney, (which sounds very wholesome and innocent), when divorce and custody proceedings, and most lawyers in general are NOT. As such, it is difficult to recommend the book or the author in navigating such highly personal and intrusive matters.
As many parents find out after the courts have destroyed their relationships with their children, the right of a parent is fundamental [liberty] interest which should not require a person to go through a lengthy, costly, or intrusive legal battle to protect a God-given right, if there is no finding of 'parental unfitness' on one or both sides, which is irrelevant anyway if a child is NOT in any immediate danger, or if neglect is not real.
The contrast is that many parents end up being hard pressed to find ANY lawyer that would make such arguments, in Leving's jurisdiction or anywhere else. The concept of a "father's rights" attorney to me is what is truly a "suspect classification", just as a "Biker's rights" attorney, or a "Gay Baby Seal's Rights" attorney, etc. Color it anyway you want--at the end of the day they're still Lawyers, most of whom will clean you out without a thought as to the outcome for you, your children, or your case, and do not deserve any special affection or attention beyond that of a used car salesman, or a pan-handler. You have to scrutinize them and show up at EVERY court hearing.
Parents are "lawyer bait" if they do not know the ropes, or how lawyers often separate divorcing parents from their children [and their money] under the guise of "helping" to protect their rights--as if they have the power from God almighty to protect you, [which they do not, regardless of what you see on TV]. Getting this type of advice purely from a lawyer would be like going to a auto mechanic to ask if they should replace your engine. It's not hard to figure out how quickly the fool and his money will be parted.
Do your homework and get solid referrals from multiple sources of people who've worked with lawyers and find someone with a good track record if you absolutely must hire one.
Don't be fooled by Snakeoil Salesmen. Most lawyers do NOT want clients to bring up fundamental rights or use of "strict scrutiny" in unlawful removal of parental rights, which is what typically happens in our trial and appellate courts, because it would in part hurt the divorce industry, regardless of the "best interests of the child" statute. At the same time, if you show-up without a lawyer, you might as well hang a sign on your back that says "kick me". It's a "members' only" club, it's about lawyers helping lawyers, [not children or parents]. Regardless of the outcome, THERE ARE NO WINNERS unless or until you can make peace. If you can't do that--then get connected with your elected officials and national advocacy groups that are working to protect children and parents.
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1 of 1 people found the following review helpful
5.0 out of 5 stars Best Guide for Fathers in a Child Custody Dispute, April 4 2007
By 
William Booker (Chicago, Illinois) - See all my reviews
(REAL NAME)   
This review is from: Fathers' Rights: Hard-Hitting and Fair Advice for Every Father Involved in a Custody Dispute (Paperback)
This book is the best book on the market for fathers going though a child custody dispute. It helped me out a lot. It's practical information and a really easy read. Jeffery leving is an expert on child custody issues. Fathers are often looked at as just providers, but this book gives dads a fighting chance in court. Fathers are just as important as mother to the growth and well being of their kids. Finally a book that proves "Fathers Matter"!!!... Thanks a lot.
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5.0 out of 5 stars Required reading for Father's involved in Div / Custody, Dec 11 2003
By 
Christopher Hansen (Gig Harbor, WA United States) - See all my reviews
(REAL NAME)   
This review is from: Fathers' Rights: Hard-Hitting and Fair Advice for Every Father Involved in a Custody Dispute (Paperback)
First let me say that I have read dozens of books on Father's rights. As someone who has been involved in a long-term divorce and custody action, I felt it was imperative to educate myself "outside of the box". What I found was that while many self-help books offer good advice and content, none have done so within the context of the American legal system. No matter what is said about good intentions, it always comes down to legal issues in conjunction with behavioral and mental issues.
This book is worth its weight in gold. Written by an attorney with vast experience in Father's rights cases, it is a no BS manual for determining your situation and finding a roadmap to its conclusion. Excellent informational content, well-written, and methodically walks the reader through the different phases, scenarios, and pitfalls of impending litigation, whether it be a simple way to craft a parenting agreement or all-out war.
I whole-heartedly recommend this book as the single best resource you can find for Father's engaged in divorce and custody issues. Real-world advice that's on target. I have engaged four different attorneys in two states in a three year cross-state litigation case involving UCCJEA, and spent 30k in fees for worthless representation until I found my current attorney. If these professionals had the cumulative experience that was documented in this book, and had they been able to trasfer that information to me in its entirety, I could have saved myself a ton of problems.
Do yourself a favor and buy this book.
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5.0 out of 5 stars WOW! - this book is great!, Feb. 7 2002
By 
"dryan71" (Joliet, IL United States) - See all my reviews
This review is from: Fathers' Rights: Hard-Hitting and Fair Advice for Every Father Involved in a Custody Dispute (Paperback)
The author of the book, Jeffery Leving, is a well-known divorce lawyer in the Chicago-area, solely because of his commercials shown between Jenny Jones-esque talk shows. Because of the shady credibility that I associate with these lawyers, I wasn't sure what to expect from Leving's book. I can only really say one thing about this book - WOW! Not only is Leving a great writer, but I believe his advice will be truly valuable. (My husband will be fighting his ex-wife for custody in the coming months.) His advice includes what to look for when choosing a lawyer, ways to deal with the "ex", how to respond to interviews by court officials and "experts", and helping your child(ren) through the whole ordeal. I must have highlighted half of the book while reading it! Finally, although Leving makes note of the gender bias in the domestic court system, he does not focus on the issue. That is, where other books whine excessively about the bias problem, Father's Rights addresses gender bias in the courts but then moves on to bigger and more important issues. This is definitely a must-read for any father who sees a custody battle in his future.
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3.0 out of 5 stars The main problem is that the book wants you in court, Aug. 19 2001
By A Customer
This review is from: Fathers' Rights: Hard-Hitting and Fair Advice for Every Father Involved in a Custody Dispute (Paperback)
This book would have been better if it had been called "If You're a Dad, Stay Out of Court If You Can."
With the increase in divorce and changes in way men want to be spend time with their kids as fathers, it's predictable that the number of custody cases will also rise. But little has changed in terms of gender bias. The mother still typically gets the kids, especially if they are young. After my ex took our daughter out of state when our daughter was two and remarried (her third husband), she thought I should disappear and made visitations increasingly difficult. After five years of this, I went to court thinking I could get better visitations, and, at the least, peace of mind by having he the agreement redone. Although I don't regret going to court because my ex was forced to abide by a clearer agreement, I ended up paying more in child support even though my ex made twice what I did at the time, about 15k to my attorney, and had LESS time with my daughter. (I have a Ph.D., a full time job as a prof, no criminal record, no substance abuse, etc., and I had joint custody when my ex left the state. Even though my ex taught one class a semester as a prof, she had our daughter in full time daycare, and even though she described her new husband as "abusive" both to her and to our daughter, the shrink didn't care.) In my state, the court appoints a "guardian ad litem," a shrink who reports to the court. His or her decision is basically final. You can't take hoim to court and examine him. What happens in cases of conflict, I learned later, is that the shrink always shortens the visitations. So if you are not the custodial parent and a man, the deck is really stacked against you. Thus, I would say that if you can manage to negotiate with your ex out of court, by all means do so. Go to court ONLY AS A LAST RESORT. I had a very good attorney. But there was no way I could win. Moreover, the shrink made a new recommendation each year for the whole coming year, so that cost another 500 each year. The good thing is that it was all worth it in terms of the visitations being made more exact. (In our initial agreement, only th enumber of vistations was agreed to, not their length or their dates.) As my daughter has gotten older, she has begun to see for herself just how how unreasonable my ex is (I decided it was best to let her figure things out for herself rather than comment on them to her). I remarried happily when my daughter was eight, and my wife and I have a two year old son, who my daughter loves. So things have worked out, especially for my daughter and me, but also for her and my new wife, and for my wife and me, because we don't have to communicate with my ex (except about pick ups and drop-offs).
In some ways, the court system is a terrible racket. The courts pass the buck to the shrinks, and the shrinks pass the buck right back to the court. Everyone claims to be acting in the "best interest of the child," but that is just empty rhetoric. So stay out of court, if you can. Present yourself as calm and reasonable if you do go to court, and do not correspond by email with your ex. Also, make sure you research the shrinks. Some of them are very conservative about visitations, others are much more reasonable. And use that "best interest of the child" rhetoric too. Never talk about your own needs. They don't count. Somehow, the idea that a child would benefit from having her father be financially stable and emotionally happy is not an idea that shrinks or the courts care apparently about. Don't talk much about yourself unless asked. Don't talk about your ex, and don't express any anger aout her. Do talk about how much you love your daughter. Cry. Get very emotional about ho wmuch you miss her, how you ar concerned about her. And if you do to court, get an agreement that spells everything out in advance--exact dates, etc, for as long in advance as you can. That cuts down on any need to interact with ex. And of course, never talk to your kids about any conflict over the visitations, even if your ex is, and don't talk to them about your ex either, even if she is the ex from hell. Shield them from the conflict as much as you can.
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1.0 out of 5 stars What do we do then?, May 31 2001
By A Customer
This review is from: Fathers' Rights: Hard-Hitting and Fair Advice for Every Father Involved in a Custody Dispute (Paperback)
If the system is for the women already, then what do we do? I blame the fools who never took responsibility for there kids. I'm an 22 year old man, with a 2 year old son. I love this little boy dearly God knows, and there's nothing that I won't do for him. But if the system is going to take everything from us as far as money, then how do they expect us to live then? I understand the kids need to be taken care of, but the system needs to change. It really does. It's very obvious that some men don't take care of their kids, but the whole court system is blind to what these women are really doing. How many men are tking care of children that don't belong to them, because of some womens evilness. My question, what do we do? Men need to stand up and fight legislation for a change, to make the system fair. If you ask me the women don't really care for the children, it's the money that they care about. Take this scenario if a women already has a job paying enough money, then she recieves a big chunk of your check, it's like an extra income for HER, not the child(ren). The funds go towards new clothes mostly for the money, and expensive appartment, new car, etc. While 90% goes toward the mother, maybe, just maybe the child gets 10%. Here's the solution get educated Fathers and stay that way. No matter what this storm brings weather it.
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5.0 out of 5 stars The Anguish of Modern Fatherhood, Dec 27 2000
By A Customer
This review is from: Fathers' Rights: Hard-Hitting and Fair Advice for Every Father Involved in a Custody Dispute (Paperback)
Although I cannot speak for all non-custodial parents (Typically fathers), I can say that when I discovered this book during the winter of 1998, I felt that the author was almost speaking directly to me. Mr. Leving uderstands that our courts and our court-appointed visitation and custody mediators are profoundly gender biased. Prior to reading Fathers's Rights (How very few there are!), I had attended father-support groups for three years, and I had heard some real horror stories, especially concerning problems with denial of visitation. Mr. Leving acknowledges the fact that most mothers do not consider the fathers' visitation right as important-they view these rights as gifts or privileges for them to bestow at their wim. For the many fathers who have had to fight with the tenacity of a pit bull, this book speaks to them. It is further intersting to note that while our society continually decries the absence of fathers, it fails to acknowledge just how difficult it is for fathers to be granted even a modicum of visitation rights, and how equally apathetic judges are when it comes to enforcing them. Indeed, a father who stands on his rights stands on quicksand. It is my belief that if the mothers do not want the fathers in the childrens lives, than the mothers should not have chldren with the fathers. Instead, most mothers enforce the double standard. Unfortunately, Mr. Leving has no advice for the fathers who are poor and must represent themselves as Pro Se litigents. My answer was to go to the local law library and photocopy the statutes on Visitation and Child Support. I then read How To Reprensent Yourself In Court, published by Nolo Press. The modern father needs to become involved with Father Support Groups, and learn all he can about the few legal rights he has. Reading the statutes on visitation is not all that complex. It is also helpful when you do need an attorney that you know the rules of the game. Mr. Leving's book was, for me, a great place to start.
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5.0 out of 5 stars TOO BAD THAT THE LAW FIRM DOESN'T PRACTICE WHAT THEY PREACH, Sept. 7 2000
By A Customer
This review is from: Fathers' Rights: Hard-Hitting and Fair Advice for Every Father Involved in a Custody Dispute (Paperback)
I AM NOT 12 YEARS OLD. THE BOOK WAS WONDERFUL. AFTER READING THE BOOK, I RECOMMENDED THE LAW FIRM OF JEFFREY LEVING TO MY SON. HIS FIRST ATTORNEY BILLED HIM $9000 IN FEB 2000. HE NEVER GOT TO EVEN SEE HIS SON FOR OVER 2 MONTHS. HIS SON WAS ONLY 8 MONTHS OLD AT THE TIME. WHEN MY SON HAD HIS COURT APPEARANCES HIS FIRST ATTORNEY FROM THE FIRM NEVER EVEN SHOWED UP. IT WAS NOT UNTIL HE SAW HIS WIFE THERE, THAT HE REALIZED THAT THEY WERE DISCUSSING HIS CASE. ABOUT A MONTH LATER HIS FIRST ATTORNEY FROM THE JEFFREY LEVING LAW FIRM SUDDENLY LEFT THE FIRM. NO EXPLANATION. MY SON THEN STARTED WORKING WITH A NEW ATTORNEY FROM THE FIRM AND PAID ANOTHER $8000. HE FINALLY GOT TO HAVE HIS SON FOR 4 HRS 2 TIMES PER WEEK IN MAY, BUT ONLY BECAUSE OF MEDIATION WITH A THIRD PARTY. MY SON IS A FINE UPSTANDING CITIZEN, HE IS NOT A CRIMINAL, AND HAS NO PSYCHIATRIC HISTORY. IT IS NOW SEPTEMBER. HIS ATTORNEY CALLED HIM LAST EVENING TO REMIND HIM THAT HE WOULD SEE HIM IN COURT. AGAIN, WHEN HE GOT TO THE COURTROOM, A DIFFERENT ATTORNEY FROM THE FIRM WAS THERE, NOT HIS LAWYER HE HAD BEEN DEALING WITH. THE STAND IN ATTORNEY DID NOT INTRODUCE HIMSELF, GIVE HIM A BUSINESS CARD, OR SHAKE HIS HAND. AGAIN, HE REALIZED HE HAD A STAND IN BECAUSE HE SAW HIS WIFE'S ATTORNEY GO BEFORE THE JUDGE. THE JUDGE AWARDED HIS WIFE 40%(WHAT WAS REQUESTED BY HIS WIFE'S ATTORNEY} OF HIS TAKE HOME PAY. NO INCREASE IN VISITATION. AFTER THE RULING, MY SON TOLD THE STAND IN "THAT IS 40% OF MY TAKE HOME PAY" THE STAND IN ATTORNEY FOR THE JEFFREY LEVING FIRM TOLD HIM "TOO BAD YOU WORK FOR YOUR MOTHER, THE NUMBERS CAN BE MANIPULATED TOO EASILY" "YOU ALSO HAVE TO PAY YOUR WIFE'S ATTORNEY $5000 BY THE END OF THE MONTH OR OUR FIRM CAN NO LONGER REPRESENT YOU." I THINK THE FIRM RIDES ON THE NAME AND REPUTATION OF JEFFREY LEVING. I STILL ENDORSE THE BOOK HIGHLY, BUT IN NO WAY WOULD I EVER RECOMMEND SENDING ANY LOVED ONE TO THE FIRM.
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3.0 out of 5 stars A sad disappointment, May 3 2000
This review is from: Fathers' Rights: Hard-Hitting and Fair Advice for Every Father Involved in a Custody Dispute (Paperback)
Having helped a few male friends fight for Fathers rights when their ex's tried to pull a fast one and use the kids as a pawn in a custody fight I was disappointed that the authors did not provide KEY help, like how in the hell do some fathers who are paying thru the nose, and trying to keep their own heads above water AFFORD an attorney? I am always looking for that ONE great book I can give to men when I sense divorce is in the offing and I am sure the woman will take him for all he is worth and use the kids as the carrot to get more and more.
Sadly this wasn't the book. What we need is a few wise men who have been thru this school of hard knocks to write a co-op book that gives specifics. A book that would list non-profits and lawyers etc who give a damn about the FATHER. Simply because (contrary to popular belief) Fathers are grieving the loss of the marriage and kids and what the future holds. Fathers need a book that says "I understand I have been there and here are the ten things you NEED to do". Heck I was able to help my friends better than this book written by "professionals". Grrrrrrrrr
I had a GREAT Dad and have a GREAT husband and as the Mother of a Son even if he marrys a woman we all think is a gift, I will always want him to be educated about his rights. But for now my quest for a book that will help my males friends continues. Let me know if you know of such a book.
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3.0 out of 5 stars Correct Title: Attorney's Rights, Dec 24 1999
By 
This review is from: Fathers' Rights: Hard-Hitting and Fair Advice for Every Father Involved in a Custody Dispute (Paperback)
The focus of this book is how to be a good client and identify a good attorney and be responsive to their needs. Unfortunately, most divorced dads after a period of time, do not have the funds for an attorney so we buy books to educate ourselves.
Nothing is mentioned about the male who represents themselve in court. How self-serving for an attorney to market himself as the only option.
Fortunately, fathers are becoming more aggressive in the protection of their rights. Robert Seidenberg in his book The Father's Emergency Guide gives a divorced dad a better understanding as to what he is up against.
Forget about the traditional male role and focus on staying in your children's lives rather than trying to save a marriage. Your ex-wife has plans, you need to have yours as well!
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