Jon & Kate Gosselin

Jon Gosselin has filed a lawsuit against former wife Kate Gosselin for the primary custody of his eight children, TVGuide.com has confirmed.

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The legal papers were filed in a Berks County, Penn., court on Wednesday. Jon is requesting child support, according to the office of his attorney, Anthony F. List.

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"He wants equal say with custody, equal time, but if the circumstances remain as they are, with Kate being rarely home, Jon wants primary custody of the children," List told People on Tuesday. "He is much better able to spend time with the children."

List called Kate, who is three weeks into her Dancing with the Stars competition, an "absentee parent." Although she mainly practices from her home in Pennsylvania, Kate has to fly to Los Angeles for the dancing competition's two live shows each week.

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"Kate Gosselin can't have it both ways unless there is some balance, unless there are some opportunities for these eight children to be in her physical presence," List said. "Jon wants to spend time with these kids, and she is throwing up roadblocks. And the eight children are the innocent victims. This tears Jon up."

Calls to Kate Gosselin's attorney were not immediately returned.