Going through a divorce is a difficult time, but it doesn’t last forever. After you and your ex have reached an agreement, life can become a new normal, one in which you are no longer married. When children are involved, many can fear that the divorce will add a lot of stress to the family, especially for those little kids who can’t drive themselves yet. However, there are effective ways for which you and your ex can successfully co-parent your children together and establish a profitable joint custody schedule that allows both of you to be equally involved in the lives of your kiddos.
Joint custody comes in a few varieties, in many cases the court will determine that equal shared custody is what is best for the child and in others one parent will have more time than another. In the event of the divorce not going to trial but rather being settled beforehand, the couple can also come to their own agreement for what they feel is best for the kids. If you and your spouse are considering a divorce and are feeling overwhelmed when it comes to being a good parent and yet sharing custody, here are a few tips to think about. While there is no perfect method for anything in this world, there are still routes that can be effective and even joyful. Discuss your thoughts and concerns with your divorce attorney as well as your soon-to-be ex-spouse, and hopefully you will be able to come to an agreement that makes you both happy as well as being in the best interest of the children.
Every other week is a common style of joint custody, especially for parents who choose to remain in the same area as each other, and the child can be at their same school in the midst of rotations. Many would say this tends to be more common for older kids who would rather not float back and forth every day between their parent’s homes. This method is basically one week on and one week off for either parent, or then they would split the holidays as desired. Within the regulations of joint custody, there are also rules involving how many uninterrupted weeks a parent is allowed, and how many extra days can be used for a family vacation. Many parents will also decide that while they only want the kid to switch homes every week, they may still agree for a mid-week time together as well. For example, it is mom’s week, but the kids will go over to dads for dinner on Wednesday and mom will pick them up afterwards.
A 3-4 split is also very common, and many parents feel as this can be quite successful between the kids and parents who hope to see them more regularly. Whether the parent gets the kids three days in a row or separately is their decision and they will also have to agree on which parent gets the 3 or the 4 day time periods. Again, many parents desire to have more frequent interactions with their kids, so a possible scheduling is one parent has the kid for 2 days, the other 2 days and the other 3 (a 2-2-3 method) and therefore every other week one parent will have a longer 3 day period with their kid.
Lastly, some parents may choose to even split their days, which is common for odd scheduling shift workers. Say a parent works in the morning, but is off at lunch, they would then pick up the kid from school while the other parents are at work and they would spend the evening with their kid. Once their other parent is off, they will be able to pick up the kid and spend time with them as well. Often times the divorce is more difficult for couples, not because they aren’t ready to move on, but rather they fear how it will affect their children, and yet when they are able to find a successful method for sharing custody that may ease some of their anxieties. Is this you? Are you and your spouse considering a divorce and yet you fear making them live in two different homes? Fear not, divorce is very common in today’s society and there are many different ways in which parents can decide to share their custody. Every family is unique and though it may take time to establish your routine, it can be done. Contact Claery & Green, LLP today for a divorce and family law attorney who can help you with your divorce process.