If you have gone through a divorce involving children chances are you will be splitting parenting duties with your ex-spouse. It is absolutely vital to establish a good working relationship with your ex and some states even require parents to file a parenting plan with the court as a part of a child custody agreement.
Florida divorce courts actually require spouses to file with the court before a divorce is finalized. Regardless if you are legally obliged to develop a parenting plan or not, we recommend putting one together to ease the transition for your children.
Here is a list of things to include in a parenting plan.
- If splitting custody, determine a basic residential living schedule.
- Develop a regular visitation schedule.
- Decide on a schedule for parenting time over the holidays.
- Projected schedule for parenting time on birthdays
- Transportation arrangements for school and extracurricular activities
- Car seat requirements
- Schedules for school vacations like spring break
- Put in place a standard operating procedure for when schedules change.
- Regular child care arrangements
- How relocation requests will be handled.
In addition to the required scheduling terms within a parenting plan, we recommend that you also put these following elements into your parenting plan to create some level of cohesion for your children. Also, feel free to add any stipulations that you feel strongly about.
You should include:
- Directions for dealing with third-party visitation.
- Details of sleeping arrangements
- Instructions for administering medication and medical treatment
- Dietary and nutritional requirements
- Preferred method of discipline
- Decisions about piercing and body art
- Internet and smart device use
- The movies your children are allowed to watch
- Participation in extracurricular activities
- Participation in religious activities
Despite the fact that your marriage did not pan out it is important to set aside your difference for the best of your children. A parenting plan will help to create a set of rules that you can follow while raising your children together.