What Madonna and Guy Ritchie's divorce could mean

In England, just like here in New York, divorces opens up many issues in families, revealing intimacies of how they lived, who did what, what their vices are, and even, who was a good parent or a bad parent.
I don’t think the Madonna/Guy Ritchie may reveal that either is a bad parent. But I do not believe that just because Madonna is the main bread winner that it means she will automatically get custody. That is certainly not the law in New York. In fact, that is why the Child Support Standards Act was created to provide for the needs and financial welfare fo children whose legal custody may lie with the less affluent parent.
At the same time, it is not a foregone conclusion that just because Madonna is a working mother that she will lose custody. The divorce laws and custody laws in New York make clear that the fact that a parent works outside the home is not a fact that will be used to determine custody. The law does not want to penalize working parents.
But it is going to come down to who is the primary caretaker of the children. Just like it does when couples divorce in New York. Who prepared breakfast on regular basis, who got the kids off to school, who helped with homework, who sang lullabys at night, who arranged play dates, who took the children to their doctor’s appointments – things like that.
If both parents were equally hands on then the court may award joint physical and legal custody.
The Ritchies have two children, one biological and one adopted. Madonna has a child from a previous relationship. Madonna is likely to get custody of that child since her husband never adopted the child. But the other two children will be equally positioned in the eyes of the law because it seems Mr. Ritchie adopted the little boy from Malawi.
I almost get a feeling, though, that if Ritchie challenges her for custody, he could win. He seems very hands on. And Madonna is always away doing concerts, so how hands on could she really be in the day to day caretaking of those kids? It is not that she works. It is that she is gone a lot and can’t be in two places at once. So I would bet the hog that it is the dad who is the primary caretaker in that relationship.
But time will tell. I hope he doesn’t have any Peter Cook “internet” secrets. Otherwise he may not get custody.