While there are many important issues to be settled during a divorce, such as child custody, matters do not necessarily have to be settled in an adversarial fashion. Conflict throughout a separation tends to be counterproductive, and it can also impact the well-being of all parties.
The best interests of the children are likely to be your sole priority, and they will also be the main focus of the courts. Although the courts have the capability to dictate the terms of child custody, this doesn’t have to be the case. Many parents are able to reach an agreement and design an effective parenting plan, which can then be approved by the family court. So, what are the keys to creating a successful parenting plan?
Draft a detailed plan
For a parenting plan to be effective, the terms of custodial arrangements need to be clear. Stability can make divorce easier for children to cope with, so they should know who they are spending time with and when. One further benefit of having a parenting plan that covers all bases is that if disagreements do arise, there is a solid legal base in which to resolve them.
Make the plan adaptable
One thing that is certain is that children grow up quickly. As they develop, their specific needs will change. A suitable parenting plan must be able to reflect this. While stability is key, it is also important that your parenting plan allows for some adjustment as your child matures. With sensitivity and compromise, the plan can be adapted while staying within the confines of the law.
Adjusting to life as a parent after divorce can be challenging, but you can still play a vital role in the upbringing of your children. As you make the transition, being familiar with your legal rights will facilitate the process.