Parenting plans are documents that outline the role each parent will have in their child’s life after divorce, and the responsibilities they carry. When parents cannot come to an agreement, a judge will issue a parenting plan. In either case, an agreement is legally binding once it is issued or approved by a judge. It is common to have questions about parenting plans, as they are not something many people have dealt with prior to divorce. Below are the answers to some of the most common questions people have about these plans.
What Should You Include in a Parenting Plan?
Even when you can agree with your spouse about a parenting plan, there are still certain factors you should include within it. Many people think parenting plans only outline child custody situations, but there is much more to them than that. A parenting plan should always include:
- The amount of time the child will spend at each parent’s home
- The manner in which you will communicate with a matter relating to your child
- How holidays, vacations, and special occasions will be spent
- Cultural and religious practices important to the parent and/or child
- The child’s medical needs, and the responsibilities each parent holds for meeting them
- Where the child will attend schooling
- The type of lifestyle the child will enjoy
- Discipline expectations
- Any special needs of the child
- The process of modifying the parenting plan, if necessary
When addressing each of these factors, parenting plans must always work in the child’s best interests....