Child custody matters are generally emotional and may be difficult to resolve. The paramount consideration is what is in the best interest of the children. The court encourages parents to set aside their differences and focus on making their own parenting plan for their children. The couple may be sent to mediation in order to try to resolve their parenting differences.
Parents Can Make Their Own Parenting Plan
The parenting plan is also called custody and visitation schedule. It establishes where the children will live, how much time each parent will spend with the children and how visitation will take place. It should also include a statement about how the parents will make decisions concerning the health, welfare and education of their children.
In addition, the court suggests when parents put together their plan, they consider:
- The age of the children.
- Their personalities, interests, experiences.
- That the children have enough time with each parent.
- Making sure the plan is one that makes the children feel secure and loved.
- Being flexible. There are times, such as illness or plans of the children with their peers. when the plan may need to be adjusted.
The parenting plan is filed with the court and becomes the court order. When parents come up with their own plan instead of relying on the court to make the decisions, it is more likely they will follow the plan and there will be less contention over all.
When Parents Cannot Agree on a Parenting Plan
If parents cannot work together to prepare an agreed upon parenting plan, the court will make an order that is in the best interests of the children. The court considers all the factors it encourages the parties to consider. It will also take evidence from friends, relatives, teachers and experts. Depending on the ages of the children, the court may speak to them in chambers and elicit their preference of where they would like to live.
Call the Law Office of Erika M. Mayorquin
At the Law Office of Erika M. Mayorquin, we work with you to develop a workable parenting plan with the other parent of your children. We work exclusively in family law and are experienced in guiding our clients through the child custody and visitation process. It is always an emotional time and we strive to help you through it in the most amicable way possible. Call us for a free 45 minute consultation.