Jon and Kate, co-parenting


Jon and Kate and Child Custody

Last week, we discovered that, indeed, Jon and Kate are going to divorce.  They are planning to use a very common co-parenting technique, called “bird-nesting”.  “Bird-nesting” leaves the children in a single home, with the parents switching out.  The best practice involves both parents obtaining a second residence, in addition to the one used for parenting time with the children.  However, sometimes, co-parents can share a single residence for a short period of time. 

 “Bird-nesting” and co-parenting

“Bird-nesting” is not usually a long term solution for co-parenting, as people increasingly find it hinders their ability to pursue other relationships, as well as infringes upon their privacy.   There is at least some thought that bird-nesting is not in the best interests of the children.  See the All Academic web site.     (purchase required).  In my experience, children handle divorce a lot better than parents think they will.   Unless your children have special needs, it is likely that they can handle having more than one bed.  

In Jon and Kate’s situation, bird-nesting might be a necessity, since few people want to duplicate a home that will satisfy the needs of eight children as well as two individuals that will be going their own way. 


Jennifer Moore
Moore Family Law
Plymouth,  MN


June 16, 2009


There’s been a lot of news about Jon and Kate Gosselin, the parents of sextuplets and twins who have documented their life on TLC’s Jon & Kate Plus Eight (  It’s juicy gossip.  Jon is accused of infidelity.  Kate is accused of having a volatile temper.  It appears they are headed for divorce.    Lime Life reports they spent their 10th Anniversary apart.  The National Register claims that Jon wants to quit the show.

 Would Jon Get Child Custody? 

It’s all great gossip.  What makes the potential for divorce particularly enticing for the gossip mill is that there is a good chance that Jon, a stay-at-home father, would assume primary custody of the children.  Kate has been spending a lot of time away from home on business related to her books and publicity for the show, while Jon has stayed home to care for the children.  Kate is also rumored to be a less than ideal parent–although I have a hard time judging anyone’s parenting skills, much less a mother of eight young children.  

What About Jon and Kate’s Marital Property?

In all likelihood, Jon’s infidelity is less important to a court than Kate’s parenting skills.  But, how do you value the Gosselin estate?   How do you split it up? 

As we obtain more information, I will attempt to interpret it here.  

Jennifer Moore

Plymouth,  MN