Your Family Attorney Can Help You Determine Where the Kids Spend the Holidays

As a local family attorney, we work with a lot of couples that are going through a divorce, or already have and need to make modifications to their parenting plan.  One of the major concerns, that divorcing couples have, is how to share time with the kids around holidays and special occasions. This is understandable since both parents have special memories with the children and want to make new ones.  Unfortunately, it is typically not possible for both parents to spend time with the children the same as they used to unless of course you still want to spend Christmas with your ex.  With that in mind, it becomes important to establish a schedule that works.When going through a divorce, a parenting plan needs to be established that lists out where the children will be every day, including holidays and birthdays.  Most people aren’t sure where to start when creating this schedule, so here are some plans that we see on a regular basis:Christmas Break Most schools give kids around two weeks off for the holidays.  If you and your ex live far apart or in different states, we recommend rotating every other break or arranging it so that the kids fly the day after Christmas and return on New Years.  This way they get a good amount of time with each parent but are not flying on a holiday.  A judge has to certify your parenting plan, so these are the types of things that need to be taken into consideration.  The judge will want to see a plan that is in the best interest of the children, not the parents.  As a family attorney, we can help you to craft a plan that will be approved.The Christmas Split Many divorcing couples find that it is easier to assign one parent Christmas Eve and the other Christmas day.  This allows for new traditions to be formed that both the kids and parents can become accustomed to.  The switch typically takes place early Christmas morning so that everyone can enjoy their holiday time.  This works best when you and your ex live within an hour or two of each other, since the kids and you won’t enjoy spending hours in the car when they should be opening gifts and playing.  If you try this schedule, arrange it so that the week before Christmas they are with the parent who has them on Christmas Eve, then spend the following week with the other parent. This allows for time with extended family or a quick family vacation without needing to reschedule who the kids are with.  Remember that simplicity is key when arranging your parenting plan.Shared Days If you and your ex are going to stay in the same neighborhood or town, it becomes possible to share time with the kids on any given holiday, Christmas or otherwise.  This is a possibility, but it will be difficult.  Over time, most people move on and get into new relationships which can make it stressful to leave your family to drop off the kids with your ex-spouse in the middle of a special day.  With that in mind, only use this plan if you are certain that you and your ex are and will continue to be friendly.As a family attorney, we can help you to structure your parenting plan and navigate through your divorce so call and schedule an appointment if you need assistance.

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