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Have a Co-Parenting Plan in Place before the School Year Begins

 Posted on July 16, 2014 in Child Custody

co-parenting plan, Wheaton family law attorney, parenting plan, parent responsibility, child custody in Illinois, parent-teacher meeting, new school yearSchool is out for the summer and the last thing most kids are thinking about is the return to school in the fall. But if you share co-parenting time with an ex-spouse, it is not too early to start putting together a parenting plan in order to ensure the school year goes as conflict-free as possible, which is also important for your child's emotional well-being. Studies have proven that children continuously exposed to battles of their divorced parents can suffer from serious emotional problems, from struggling with school academics and behavior to substance abuse issues.

The best and most successful parenting plans deal with specific conditions for all issues that can arise. Everything is clearly written out in order to avoid misunderstandings or confusion. Plans should also address not only biological parents, but also stepparents or a parent's significant other.

One of the most common areas where co-parents have disagreements is over homework. A parenting plan should spell out each parent's role when it comes to making sure homework gets done. And if one parent is better at a certain subject than the other, one option could then be to divide the responsibility by subject.

Another area that can cause conflict is a sport or after school activity. Many children's sports require a strong commitment, since practices are typically held a few evenings per week, as well as the actual games. Hence, how will the responsibility of getting a child to and from an activity be divided between the parents? Sports and activities typically have associated financial costs as well. How will those costs be paid for between parents? Each posed question is important to consider when creating your co-parenting plan.

Finally, parent-teacher meetings can bring about arguments between parents. If tensions between both parents are too high, then other arrangements should be made. School administrations are used to dealing with divorced parents and many will accommodate this situation by meeting with parents separately instead of together, if that works better. One of the most common arguments is when one parent brings the new spouse. However, whatever the issues are between you and your ex-spouse, it is important to remember that these meetings are for your children. Therefore, make sure you have an agreed upon plan before they come up.

Dealing with child custody issues, such as a co-parenting plan, can be very difficult if there is a lot of acrimony between you and your ex-spouse. This is why it is important to have an experienced Wheaton family law attorney representing your best interests throughout this legal process.
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