PIERRE, SD -
The South Dakota Senate has voted unanimously to pass a bill encouraging joint physical custody of children in divorce proceedings.
Other bills dealing with the issue have failed in recent legislative sessions.
This year's bill is based on an Iowa custody law and is designed to give children substantial time with both parents. It does not establish a presumption of equal parenting, and judges will still have the final say in assigning custody.
The bill's sponsor says it reflects changes in society and research that indicates it's better for children to have contact with both parents.
It goes next to the South Dakota House.
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