When you face the possibility of divorce, you probably have serious concerns about what this decision will mean for your future relationship with your children. While you want to protect their best interests, you also want to protect your parental rights and access to your kids. Fortunately, it is possible to do both.
Through a carefully constructed and thoughtfully negotiated parenting plan, two California parents can help their kids transition and thrive after divorce. They can also help themselves by having a thorough system in place that reduces the chance for future disputes. You do not have to fight it out with the other parent in court or hope that an impersonal family law court gives you what you want — you can craft your own parenting plan and your own post-divorce future.
The details of your plan
A good parenting plan is thorough and includes specific terms that are suited to the unique needs of your family. In order to make your own parenting plan and avoid litigation, you and the other parent will have to be willing to work together and discuss things that are important to your children. This means that you may have to set aside your own feelings and prioritize what will actually work best long-term.
Each family is different, and each parenting plan should be different as well. However, the more you can include in your plan, the less likely it will be that you and your ex-spouse will have to deal with conflicts down the road. Some of the things you may want to consider for your plan include:
- Custody schedule, parenting time
- Drop-off and pick-up schedule
- How kids will spend holidays
- How parents will make decisions for their children
- Whether kids will have access to extended family
- How parents will share vacations
- How parents will resolve disputes in the future
While you have the right to craft a plan that will work for your family, any agreement or custody plan is subject to court approval. This is why it can be helpful to work with an experienced attorney throughout this process.
Before you agree to the terms of an agreement or make any choices that will impact your children, you may want to consult with a legal advocate who has your best interests and your parental rights in mind. These are important choices you have to make, but you do not have to make them alone.