Parents that are no longer living together will need to discuss the issue of child custody. Resolving the issue of child custody does not need to turn into a lengthy courtroom battle. In fact, parents in New Jersey are given the opportunity to come up with a parenting plan on their own before taking the matter to court. If the court approves of the plan, it will go into effect. This approach allows parents to have a say in the terms of their parenting plan, so it benefits everyone involved.
If you’re working on a parenting plan with your ex-spouse, it’s important to know what items need to be covered in this agreement. Here’s what should be included in this plan:
The Basic Schedule
The most important part of the parenting plan is the custody schedule, which outlines when the child will spend time with both parents. It’s common for parents to agree on alternating weeks, which means the child will spend one week with one parent then the next week with the other. But, parents can create whatever schedule works best for them.
Holidays and Special Occasions
Parents usually create exceptions to the custody schedule for holidays and special occasions. For example, make sure that each parent gets to spend their birthday with the child even if it falls on a day where they are not supposed to be with the child. Parents also need to decide who gets custody of the children on Christmas, New Year’s Day, Thanksgiving, and other major holidays.
Another issue that should be addressed is each parent’s right to communicate with the child. If the child is with one parent for the week, is the other parent allowed to call? If so, how often can the other parent contact the child? Include these rules in the parenting plan to prevent arguments in the future.
Parents will need to communicate with one another, too. The parenting plan should outline what information needs to be shared in order to effectively co-parent, how it should be shared, and how soon it needs to be shared. Parents should also discuss how to communicate with one another regarding schedule changes. For example, let’s say one parent needs to travel for work while he is supposed to have the child. The plan should explain when he is expected to request a schedule change with the other parent. Parents also need to communicate with one another when they would like to take the child on vacation. Keeping these lines of communication open is crucial, so this information must be included in the parenting plan.
If you are working on a parenting plan with your ex-spouse, contact Williams Law Group, LLC at once. An experienced attorney from our team will work tirelessly to protect your relationship with your child with a fair parenting plan. Call our office at (908) 738-8404, email us at email@example.com, or contact us through our confidential online form to schedule a consultation.