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What matters can you address in a parenting plan?

While divorcing your spouse will undoubtedly impact many areas of your life, one of the most substantial changes you may encounter is a change in the amount of time you are able to spend with your child. While sharing custody of your child with your former partner may not be your top choice, it may help you to know that joint-custody arrangements can offer many benefits for children of divorce. Additionally, spending time in both you and your ex’s homes can have positive effects on your child’s overall development and well-being.

So, what can you do to help your family adjust to the new co-parenting or custody arrangement and streamline your child’s transition into living in two homes?

Parenting plans

Increasingly, divorced parents find that they can improve their co-parenting relationship and reduce the number of battles they have over their shared children by creating and sticking to carefully drafted parenting plans. Parenting plans, in their simplest form, set guidelines that both parents agree to follow when it comes to raising their son or daughter. Such plans can cover a wide range of matters.

Just what sorts of issues may you choose to address in a parenting plan? The information included therein can range from general to highly specific. For example, most parenting plans include information about the custody agreement, and many parenting plans also take into account what parents agree to do when it comes to holidays, a child’s birthday, summer and school vacations and so on.

Many parenting plans also address which parent has decision-making power over the shared child and when. For example, you may want to add content in your parenting plan asserting that the parent caring for the child at the time has the ability to make basic decisions on the child’s behalf. However, in the event that major decisions regarding the child’s welfare are necessary, you may want to agree that both parents will come together before making them.

Having a mutually agreed-upon parenting plan can help ensure a stable environment for your shared child. It can also potentially improve the co-parenting relationship by helping you avoid potential conflict.

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