The goal of a good parenting plan is that both parents should maintain a meaningful relationship with the children even after getting divorced. A special challenge is presented in preserving the relationship between children and both parents when parents live in separate homes, after divorce or separation.
Parents then need to work together to find a parenting schedule that works for the whole family, putting their conflict aside. Parenting plans provide children and parents with predictability and consistency. A well-constructed plan can help prevent future conflict.
Many parents have the following goals in deciding on a plan:
1. Make sure the children can continue to have a close and safe relationship with both parents.
2. Both parents are involved in their children’s lives consistently.
3. Both parents should make the children feel loved and cared for.
4. The special relationship that each parent has with the child should be recognized.
5. The responsibility of caring for the children should be shared in a way that works for each parent and the children.
Shared custody and Parenting Plans are of different types. A number of factors also go into deciding whether a particular schedule is the right fit for the family or not.
Follow the brief guide below for working on a parenting plan:
Each parent needs to think about how they can best continue to parent the children in light of the needs of each child and each parent’s work schedule. Many couples create their own ways of sharing parenthood in order to accommodate their children’s needs, as per their work schedule and the economic needs of the family.
It is important that you consider the following factors when making the plan:
• Each child’s age and maturity level
• Attachment of the child to each parent
• Special needs of the child
• Relationship of the child with siblings and friends
• Work schedules of the parents
• Arrangements for the current and future childcare
• Handling of rules and discipline in each household
• Communication of the parents with each other about the children
There are many different options for a shared custody plan, so stay open-minded and flexible. Review each idea with a view towards whether the plan is practical for the family. Best solutions are the ones created by the parents by revising standard options.
Making a parenting plan is understandably a very emotional time. Parents should focus on the children and do not let the strong feelings and emotions cloud their judgment about what is best for the children.
Contact Family Lawyers Sydney to have an experienced family law attorney to help you in the making of informed decisions about relevant law, types of parenting plans and preparing the written agreement. Call us at 02 8084 2764.