Summer parenting time and developing a summer custody schedule in New Jersey are common reasons that people may seek guidance from a skilled family law attorney. The summer schedule for divorced parents can be a source of conflict related to co-parenting and the joint custody summer schedule.
Summer parenting time may differ from the schedule during the rest of the year. Changes in the summer schedule are most often related to vacations or a change in the child’s school schedule. Now that summer is upon us, you may find that you need to consider adjustments to parenting time that you did not anticipate. Depending on your existing parenting plan, there are some suggestions that you should follow to make your summer parenting plan easier for everyone involved, most importantly your child. Summer schedules may remain the same each summer or they may change depending upon each family’s needs and circumstances. If you are concerned that your shared custody plan does not address issues that have arisen this summer, you should seek the help of a skilled family lawyer to help you craft a parenting plan that works effectively for you and your family during the summer months.
Summer Parenting When You Have a Plan
If you already have a parenting plan in place, you will want to review the summer parenting schedule routinely. Make sure that you are prepared and able to deliver your child to activities and that the other parent has been informed about any plans that you may have to travel with your child.
Oftentimes, parenting plans established during a divorce or separation do not set forth summer schedules with specificity, leaving issues to be addressed when a particular situation arises. When that time comes, there may not be agreement on issues that one parent assumed would be agreeable to the other parent. Perhaps, the parents’ intentions cannot be carried out due to an unexpected change, which then must be resolved. To avoid litigation, drafting a comprehensive summer plan will be the best approach to meet everyone’s needs and keep your matter out of court.
In New Jersey, agreed upon or court ordered summer parenting time generally supersedes regularly scheduled parenting time so when it is your scheduled time with your child, your summer parenting hours will be considered primary to plans that the other spouse might have for your child. This can be the cause of struggles related to parenting time that can necessitate seeking legal counsel for resolution.
What if You Don’t Have a Summer Parenting Plan?
There are some instances where there is not a provision in the parenting plan for the summer months, or the parenting plan has not been finalized when the summer months arrive. It is necessary to address not only each parent’s schedule or plans to vacation with the child, but the child’s schedule and the care that may be needed, depending upon the child’s age, when school is not in session any longer.
Summer parenting plans should be drafted with the guidance of counsel to ensure that that there are not any oversights along the way that can lead to strife. The following should be included in your summer parenting plan:
- Proper access by phone, email, or text during summertime.
- Advanced notice and/or consent if the child will be taken out of state
- Advanced notice of a scheduled summer vacation
- Travel itinerary and a method of communication while the child is traveling
Communication is a key element of any effective, shared parenting plan, and your lawyer will ensure that you and your spouse are not confused about the terms and stipulations of the parenting agreement that is in place. Even if the summer plan that has been laid out will be replaced by a different plan in the future, you will have the guidelines that you need to enjoy a pleasant and fun summer with your child.
Contact us Today for Summer Parenting Plan Assistance
If you are concerned about the details of your shared parenting plan over the summer or you do not have an established parenting plan that provides guidelines for summer parenting time with your child, contact our legal team at DeTorres & DeGeorge. With years of experience our team can assist you to navigate the process of creating the correct parenting plan for your individual needs.
Reach out to us today for a consultation and address your summer custodial agreement arrangements so that you have the guidance and understanding that you need in creating the best schedule for your family.