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Summertime and child custody matters: 4 tips for divorced parents

On Behalf of | May 9, 2024 | Child Custody

The sun is shining, flowers are blooming, and the school calendar is ramping up with concerts and end of the year festivities. These are all common signs that summer is fast approaching. This means a shift in schedules for every family, but divorced parents have a few more obstacles to navigate when it comes to getting their summer calendar in order. Although each family’s needs are unique, four tips that generally help divorced parents better ensure a smooth transition into summer months include the following.

#1: Review the paperwork

You likely discussed the particulars of where the children would spend summer during the divorce process. Review the details of the parenting plan, looking for information on scheduling during the summer. You may have already outlined some of the particulars within this document. Review it before moving forward with summer plans.

#2: Prioritize

Summer camp, enrichment courses, musical opportunities and sporting camps abound during the summer break. It may be tempting to take every opportunity available for your children, but this is not always the best option — for your kids or for the sanity of either parent. Review what is available and, depending on your children’s age and maturity, consider including them in the discussion.

Once you have narrowed it down, it is a good idea to make sure the options fit within the arrangement outlined in the parenting plan and that the other parent is on board with a proposed plan.

#3: Put together a calendar

The changes in scheduling that happen during summer months means a change in routines. It is helpful to have a family calendar to help both parents remember the children’s new schedules. Online options are available that can provide both parents easy access and the ability to make changes in real time as needed.

#4: Communicate

It is helpful to have an open line of communication with the other parent. For some, this may mean a phone call or brief chat. For others, it may be best to keep interactions at a minimum. In either situation, there is likely an app that can help you better ensure information about the summer schedule and the children’s needs is easily accessible for both parents. Review what is available and find what works best for your family.

It is important to note that the best plan will vary depending on each family’s needs. Taking the time to put some thought into the schedule and communicate with the other parent and children can go a long way to alleviating some of the stress that comes with the shift away from the school schedule and into summer break.