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Consider parenting plan terms very carefully

As children grow and mature, their needs change. This makes coming up with a parenting plan challenging because you might draft a perfect plan that works great right now but fails to meet your child's changing needs later.

It's better to get a good fit right now, however. Later, when situations change, you can revisit the agreement between you and your ex and tweak it until it is once again a good fit. You can always modify a child custody agreement to reflect the child's needs as they change.

We know that you might not look forward to working with your ex in this manner, but you may find that being able to focus on the present might make coming up with the parenting plan easier.

When you think about what needs to be included in the parenting plan, consider your child's schedule and needs as they are now. This can give you the basic information you need to make a plan. You will need to negotiate the exact terms with your ex, and this might require both adults consulting their own schedules. This allows the children to spend time with both parents instead of always being cared for by sitters.

The positive thing about parenting plans is that they can be customized. This lets you and your ex set terms that work for your family's unique situation. As you think about what to include, make sure that you plan for how major decisions get made, as well as for conflict resolution when the co-parents disagree. Will you work together to make decisions about health care, education, faith and other matters or will one parent be responsible for certain categories while the other parent is responsible for the rest?

You should decide on which basic conflict resolution methods you will include in the parenting plan. This gives you a blueprint to resolve the situation if you can't agree. We can help you ensure that your parenting plan will work for your child's needs.

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