Getting a divorce is stressful enough, but when you add in custody of minor children, you then encounter several additional challenges. The idea is to make sure your custody agreement is in the best interest of your children. To do this, a few aspects need to be included in your custody papers.
Create a Thorough Visitation Schedule
The first aspect to get clear is the visitation schedule. When one parent has physical custody, also known as custodial custody, you need to determine the visitation schedule for the other parents. Even if you both get along, it can be tempting to have a verbal agreement about visitation rights.
However, the moment someone gets angry, he or she may decide the other parent cannot have access to the children. To help prevent this from happening, you need the custody arrangement in writing. This helps maintain a balance and your children can get used to a new routine.
With that said, you need a separate portion of your custody agreement dedicated to holidays and birthdays. Many custodial parents feel that they should have the children during these times.
While it may be practical to handle holidays this way, especially if one parent lives out of state, you still need a plan that allows the other parent access to them on these dates. Some parents choose to alternate holidays every year to keep it fair or plan holidays were everyone is at one location.
Determine Childcare Responsibilities
The next aspect that needs to be in your custody agreement is the childcare methods both parents will be using. Unless you have teenagers, you will need someone to watch your children when you cannot be with them.
It is important to remember that in some states, there are laws for how old a child can be when left alone at home. If your state has a specific age, you need to make sure you have babysitters for children under these ages.
In this portion, you also want to determine which caregivers are acceptable such as daycare facilities, family members or professional nannies. This one aspect can help parents talk about childcare options they are uncomfortable with the other person using.
Consider Medical and Dental Payments
Another thing to consider is which parent is responsible for medical and dental payments. In some states, the courts may assign a parent as being responsible, especially if they already have insurance. You also have the option of splitting the cost between you, but you will need this in writing, so that one parent does not try to avoid paying for the services your children need.
To help make sure your custody agreement is practical and reasonable, you will need a family attorney to help you. An experienced family lawyer will be able to create and file your new custody papers with the courts during your divorce proceedings.Share
6 July 2015
Although I am far from perfect, I have focused on abiding by the local laws for the vast majority of my life. Unfortunately, about five years ago, I realized that I was being accused of a crime that I didn't commit. I thought about letting the trial run its course, but then I realized that fighting would be important to ensure my future. I teamed up with a great lawyer, and things became much easier overnight. My legal counsel told me what to do and what to avoid, and he was able to prove the facts in a court of law. This blog is all about choosing to fight charges.