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What are the Do’s and Don’ts of Creating a Parenting Plan?

A parenting plan is a very important document that arises out of a divorce between two parents. It outlines the desires and expectations of each parent as to how they want to navigate raising their children together, yet separately. When creating this plan, there are certain do’s and don’ts that should be kept in mind in order to ensure a smooth process.

Tips of What to Do

When creating a parenting plan, it can be beneficial to implement the following tips:

  • Take into consideration each party’s personality and parenting style. If both spouses are flexible people, you may not have to go into thorough detail when creating the documents. However, if a spouse is more controlling, it is crucial to be detailed and be clear when setting rules.
  • Make sure the parenting plan covers all issues that are important to you. This can include parenting time, transportation, the “right of first refusal,” and possibly even a morality clause.
  • Be sure the parenting time schedule is complete. This includes regular time, holidays, and vacations with clear start and end times. It should also contain which kind of time comes first, second, or third. For example, if holidays are more important than a regular weekend schedule, it should be included.
  • Make sure the plan is clear. If there is something you do not understand, ask for clarification or change the language before signing the document.

Tips for What Not to Do

During this time, it is important to be aware of what not to do. Certain decisions may not help the situation in the short-term or long-term. This can include:

  • Writing an overly long plan. A parenting plan is a blueprint of how you wish to handle parenting issues after the divorce. It should not be an essay covering every possible issue that may arise over the course of the child’s life. 
  • Avoiding sensitive matters just to get the process over. When you and your spouse disagree on an issue, the matter needs to be addressed immediately instead of later. This can only make the issue more difficult in the future.
  • Signing an agreement you cannot live with. It is crucial to not agree to something on paper that you do not intend to follow through on later. This can lead to unsuccessful co-parenting.

Contact our Firm

If you need an experienced legal team to guide you through your divorce, contact Townsend, Tomaio & Newmark L.L.C today.