When parents can work together, the child benefits. This is especially true in the midst of a divorce.
Determining parenting time after a divorce is key, and a proper parenting plan is essential to accomplishing this. In cases where parents are on decent terms, it may be possible to create a parenting plan outside of court.
Keep the proper focus
During and even after the divorce process, emotions can run high. However, for the well-being of the children, it is important that parents do not act out of emotion; they should strive to stay focused on and for the children. One helpful way to accomplish this is for the parents to treat each other as co-workers on the job of co-parenting. Keeping this mindset can aid in controlling emotions and thinking in the best interest of the children.
Include key aspects
Though parenting plans are unique to each family, there are certain elements that they should all include:
- Visitation and custody arrangements
- Special events and holiday schedules
- Designations for decision making
- Dispute resolution protocol
- Set communication channels
- Any accommodation provisions as the children grow
Covering these key bases can aid in developing a strong parenting plan that not only details what should be done but also aids in discouraging any adverse activity by either party.
Complete filing properly
Though the parents work to create the parenting plan outside of court, a judge must approve the plan in order for it to become legally binding. Therefore, parents must file the proper paperwork that details the different aspects of the plan. As long as the plan appears to be in the best interest of the children, the court is likely to approve it as-is. However, if any provisions within the plan, or the plan itself, seem to benefit one or both of the parents more than the children, it is likely that the judge will make some adjustments.
A parenting plan is a critical part of the divorce process for parents. Take some time to consider what important aspects you need to address in your parenting plan.