Handling Custody and Parenting Time Disputes Over the Holidays

Home for the Holidays


The holidays are a time for family. Children are home from school, and this can lead to disputes over custody and parenting time. This conflict can be especially hard on children, so read on for some practical information on handling custody and parenting time disputes during the holidays.

It’s best to have a holiday schedule for parenting time already in place. You can develop one when forming a parenting plan and parenting time schedule. If you did not include a holiday schedule in your parenting plan or circumstances have changed enough that the existing schedule isn’t feasible, consider working with a parenting coordinator to develop a schedule for the holidays.

If you are unable to negotiate an agreement, you can take the matter to court to have a judge resolve the issue. To do this, you will have to take action well in advance of the holidays. This is an effective measure when parents try to drastically alter holiday schedules to accommodate their own lives without regard for what is best for the child.

If you don’t have the time to take the matter to court, make sure you follow your existing schedule in good faith. If you cannot accommodate the other parent’s wishes, stick to the schedule and carefully document instances of the other parent failing to adhere to the schedule. This information can help if you later take the issue to court to have a judge enforce or modify an order. If the other parent has taken your child or is withholding him or her from you, this is called custodial interference. This is unlawful, and the parent who interferes with custody can lose certain rights or even go to jail.

During this time, your focus should be on doing what is best for your child. On a practical level, it’s good to be flexible during the holidays. This can certainly save your child from the animosity that can develop between you two. But you should also know when to defend your rights and your child’s happiness and well-being. Speak with an experienced New Jersey child custody attorney about what you can do before, during, and after the holidays to protect your child’s best interests.


If you have questions about custody during the holidays, the Williams Law Group, LLC is here to help. The experienced attorneys at Williams Law Group, LLC can help you with your child custody case, making sure your child’s best interests are protected and your rights as a parent are defended. Located in Union, New Jersey, Williams Law Group, LLC provides compassionate and dedicated legal services to Union, Bergen, Essex, Hudson, Morris, Monmouth, and Middlesex counties, and the surrounding areas. Our knowledgeable attorneys handle divorce and family law, child custody, and child abuse/neglect cases. Call our office at (908) 810-1083, email us at info@awilliamslawgroup.com, or contact us through our confidential online form to schedule a consultation and ultimately get you connected with an experienced New Jersey divorce and child custody attorney.


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