Some couples who are no longer compatible choose to stay together for the sake of minor children. While it may be true that divorce is often a last resort decision, there are times when this option could be your best way to move forward and maintain the long-term mental and emotional well-being of all parties involved, including children.
It’s possible to create and implement a detailed co-parenting plan. This way, minor children can grow and thrive through meaningful contact with both parents, even if you and your former spouse no longer share a residence. Read on to learn specifics about a shared parenting approach.
Do Your Research
As with any endeavor focused on the peace and security of minor children, it’s essential to have a concrete plan and understand the details before starting. There is no “typical” parenting plan, and while family courts in many jurisdictions have created templates, every family dynamic is different. Your family will have a unique focus and considerations to mull. That’s why working with an adept divorce attorney in Daytona Beach is a good first step to accomplish this goal.
As you ponder thoughts and ideas for a comprehensive co-parenting plan, it’s wise to consider certain factors, such as:
- What are the specific needs of your minor children (emotional, mental, physical, developmental)?
- Are there restraining orders or other legal provisions in place that could impede your co-parenting plan?
- How will unrestricted communication (email, phone, text) be seamlessly maintained while minor children are with your former spouse?
- How will you navigate after-school activities, off-site extra-curricular trips (such as sports travel), time with friends, and similar?
- What will be your plan regarding holidays and vacations?
- How will the cost of scheduled and unexpected medical expenses be shared?
- What happens if your former spouse moves away?
As mentioned, you’ll certainly have your own questions and concerns regarding a co-parenting plan for your minor child or children. Contact Daytona Beach divorce attorneys well-versed with family law, who can help you draft and implement the plan that works best for your family.
Cast Aside Emotions
Separation is never easy. There are many thoughts and emotions involved. It’s important, however, to approach co-parenting as a sort of business relationship. Establishing such a plan doesn’t mean you don’t trust your former spouse, or that there are disagreements that are impossible to resolve. Instead, this option exists to maintain the peace and security of your minor offspring.
Take care during this process to set your needs apart from those of your child/children. Don’t talk about your former relationship when youth are present. Avoid “grilling” kids when they arrive back from time spent with your former spouse. Still, you may want to keep relevant and appropriate records to avoid future confusion or accusation.
Keep Realistic Expectations
As a responsible parent, your top priority is ensuring the consistent protection of minor children. It’s wise to remember, however, that delays can and do occur. Traffic/construction slowdowns could cause your former spouse to arrive late picking up or dropping off youth. Sports games or drama practices are often “held over” for various reasons.
In addition, when minor children obtain their driver’s license (typically around age 16), they may wish to exhibit their independence and transport themselves to parental visits. This is a normal part of the development process.
Get a Dependable Advocate
Strive to set your main focus to the ongoing safeguard of your minor offspring. If you feel this might be a daunting or even impossible task to accomplish, it’s best to partner with Ormond Beach attorneys who can help you with all aspects of family law matters.
Since 1983, we’ve helped countless Central Florida residents just like you with a variety of legal needs. Along with family law, our firm specializes in business and corporate law, criminal defense, real estate law, and more. Contact us today to learn more about establishing a co-parenting plan, and to get answers to all your legal questions.