Law Office of Edward S. Matisoff

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Creating a parenting schedule

Families in California understand how hard divorce can be. It’s a stressful time, and that’s doubly true when children are involved. Finding a way to co-parent is essential if children are going to make a smooth transition. Creating a parenting schedule that works for everyone is a cornerstone of a new family life.

Making a plan to co-parent

A parenting schedule is critical for a successful divorce. For a schedule to really work, it needs to be written with the children in mind, not the adults. It must also be realistic. For example, it may be tempting to schedule children to spend some days of the school week in both parents’ homes. But in practice, with activities, homework and friend time, that becomes difficult to do.

Planning around the holidays also needs to make sense in the real world. Consider what’s best for the kids involved. Limiting the amount of time they’re shuttling from place to place means more time spent building relationships and making memories with family members. If the children involved in the divorce are older, ask about what they want and take that into consideration.

What not to do

Parents should not compete when deciding who spends time where. The goal in crafting a plan for custody and parenting time is not winning; it’s to create a plan that helps children develop in a healthy way.

The court can impose a schedule if necessary, but it’s best to work something out between the parties. Parents have no control over the process when it gets to that point. During a divorce, it’s wise to seek advice from a lawyer who has experience in helping couples with custody issues. An experienced attorney may be able to help everyone avoid common pitfalls.