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How Should Parenting Time Be Addressed in My Parenting Plan?

 Posted on March 25, 2021 in Parenting Time (Visitation)

DuPage County family law attorneyIf you are a parent who is getting divorced, issues related to your children will be some of the most important matters that you will need to resolve. As you work to negotiate a divorce settlement with your spouse, you will create a parenting plan that fully details all decisions related to the allocation of parental responsibilities (child custody) and parenting time (visitation). The determination of how you and your spouse will divide the time that your children will spend in each of your homes will affect many other issues in your case, so you will want to make sure you have addressed this issue properly and made arrangements that will provide for your children’s best interests.

Common Parenting Time Arrangements

There are a multitude of different ways that parents can divide parenting time. When making these decisions, parents should consider the roles that they have played when caring for their children in the past, the feasibility of a proposed schedule, and how they can maintain consistency for their children and work together as co-parents to meet their needs. Some common ways of dividing parenting time include:

  • 50/50 schedules - If both parents have played equal roles in raising their children and providing daily child care, they may be able to maintain these roles by creating a schedule in which they will each have equal amounts of time with the children. In these cases, parents will need to make sure arrangements are in place for transporting children to and from school or daycare, and they will both need to have time in their work schedules to care for their children on a daily basis and on weekends. Parents may use a 2/2/3 schedule in which children stay at each parent’s home for two days during the week while alternating three-day weekends between parents, or they may alternate weeks with each parent or use other arrangements for sharing equal amounts of parenting time.

  • 60/40 or 70/30 schedules - This type of arrangement may be used if it makes sense for children to stay with one parent for the majority of the time while still spending regular time with the other parent. These schedules may have the children spend weekdays with one parent and weekends with the other, children may spend time with one parent every other weekend and one day during the week, or children may stay with one parent every third or fourth day.

  • 80/20 schedules - If one parent did not participate in childcare activities as much as the other and does not expect to be as closely involved in their lives going forward, these types of arrangements will allow them to still spend time with the children regularly. In many cases, these schedules will have the children stay with one parent the majority of the time and visit the other parent every other weekend.

Other Parenting Time Considerations

A parenting plan will need to address the specific times that parents will pick up or drop off their children at the beginning or end of their scheduled parenting time. It should also address holidays and school vacations. In many cases, major holidays will alternate between parents each year, with one parent having the children on certain holidays in even years and the other parent having them on those holidays in odd years. Parents can also determine the time they will each have with children during summer and winter vacations, as well as the week of spring break.

The parenting plan should specify a priority for how conflicts between schedules will be handled. For example, holidays may take first priority, school vacations may take second priority, and the regular weekday and weekend parenting time schedule will be followed in all other cases. Parents may also agree to include a right of first refusal stating that if one parent will be unavailable during any days or times when they are scheduled to have the children, they will notify the other parent and offer them the chance to take the children before finding alternate forms of child care.

Contact Our DuPage County Parenting Time Attorneys

During your divorce, the attorneys of Calabrese Associates, P.C. can help you create a parenting plan that will protect your children’s best interests and meet your family’s needs. To learn how we can help you complete your divorce successfully, contact our Naperville parenting plan lawyers by calling our office at 630-393-3111.



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