Being able to work with your Co-parent to create a possession schedule that works well for your family both now and in the long term, he's one of the most important aspects of eight divorce or child custody cases. While many people assume that as a family court judge we'll be the ones to make determinations like this for your family the reality is that you and your Co-parent will be given every opportunity to create your path in terms of creating a workable possession and access schedule.
The main limitations that people in your position tend to encounter in divorce cases, as well as child custody matters, relate to an inability or unwillingness to negotiate with one another as well as problems with creativity when it comes to thinking about creative and straightforward possessions schedules. In this way, hiring an experienced family law attorney with the Law Office of Bryan Fagan can go a long way toward helping you and your family settle your case before a trial and to create a workable schedule that maximizes your child's time with both you and your Co-parent.
When it comes to creating a possession schedule for your children a family court judge will look primarily to the best interests of your child. This means considering the specific needs of your child now, and in the future as well as a range of other considerations. Your family court judge will want to ensure that both you and your Co-parent have meaningful opportunities to spend time with your child. This does not necessarily mean that custody time needs to be split directly down the middle period however, what it does mean is that the position schedule will need to be workable and fair for both parents.
If you are a parent who works on the weekends or has an otherwise unorthodox schedule for your employment, then this is probably an especially interesting topic for you. Importantly, you will need to pay special attention to the creation of a possession schedule that allows you to spend time with your child but also meet the responsibilities for your work. Sacrificing the relationship with your child or the ability to continue working is not ideal. However, you need to be wary of agreeing to things in mediation that would put you in a difficult spot as far as logistics and transportation are concerned.
For example, you need to be mindful of the challenges presented by living in a major metropolitan area as far as traffic is concerned. Agreeing to a standard possession order where you will have to pick up your child from their mother’s house at 6:00 PM on Friday on the first, 3rd, and 5th weekends of each month could be a challenge for you if you happen to drive across town after work lets out to make that happen. This puts everyone involved, including your child, in a tricky situation. You may be able to avoid Situations like this merely by being more conscientious About how you negotiate what you are willing to agree to in mediation.
How to plan for the best type of weekend visitation after the Texas family law case
When it comes to planning on how to create a position in the access schedule that suits your family well, it is important to remember that several factors are worth considering on behalf of your family. The last thing you want to do is to breeze past the type of considerations that we are about to give only to find that You failed to consider an important attribute of your parenting possession plan. As it typically happens, a small problem regarding a position plan now typically grows to be a much larger problem Later on. My unscientific opinion is that issues like this do not become larger problems linearly but rather do so exponentially.
The first thing that I would consider when trying to come up with a workable possession and access schedule is to think about the specific needs of your children. This may seem obvious but in many circumstances surrounding a divorce or child custody case people in your position will sometimes agree to possession schedules that do not suit their lives or their child's life, either. This is done to speed up the end of the case. While it is understandable to want to be done with a family law case sooner rather than later, it is not worth agreeing to something for the sole reason of moving towards a faster end to your case.
Rather, you need to consider the age, activity level, and other circumstances of your children before agreeing to anything in mediation. For example, does your child have a specific health need that makes transportation more cumbersome for him or her? If so, then perhaps thinking about a possession schedule that minimizes car trips or having to be transported would be best. On the other hand, do you have an older child who is involved in extracurricular activities? In that case, you may need to work your possession schedule around the needs of your children and any other circumstances related to their life outside of the home.
Assuming that it is in the best interest of your child, you and your Co-parents should do your best to be able to work out a possession schedule that allows for frequent contact between your children in both of you. Sometimes this can be easier said than done given work schedules and things of that nature. While many families want to be able to create possession schedules that allow for split custody this isn't always possible or even beneficial for your child. However, there are ways to divide custody that allow for a great degree of fairness in terms of dividing time between you and your Co-parent.
The tried-and-true standard possession order in Texas does a pretty good job of allowing both parents to have meaningful opportunities to spend time with children. Even if you are named as the possessory conservator of your children and have visitation rights rather than primary custody, you will still be able to spend large chunks of time with your children regularly. Ultimately what a standard possession order boils down to is that you will have more weekends with your children than your Co-parent and slightly more holiday time when summer is factored into the equation.
If both you and your Co-parent have work schedules that allow for then you all may want to consider Attempting to work out a position schedule that is close to a 50/50 split. This would allow for both of you to be able to maximize the time that you were able to spend with your children as well as share in parenting responsibilities. this is an especially attractive option for parents who can work well together as a team and coordinate their efforts without strife or argument regularly. While no possession schedule is perfect, they split possession schedule can create a circumstance where Parents can maximize the quality time that they can spend with their child.
Logistics, travel, and possession schedules in Texas
One of the most important factors associated with Coming up with workable parenting plans in Texas relates to Work schedules and the commute between your home and that of your Co-parent. In many ways, these may be factors that did not immediately come to mind while you begin to negotiate a parenting plan. However, I think they are two of the most practical considerations apparent in your position can consider as you begin to negotiate a workable parenting plan.
You don't need me to tell you that we live in a big city that is very spread out. With, where you decide to live after a family law case can directly impact the type of possession schedule that ends up being workable for you and your family. The closer that you live to your Co-parent the more creative and flexible your possession schedule can be. Minimizing the amount of travel between your homes can allow for later or earlier drop-off and pick-up, easier coordination when schedules change at a moment's notice as well as fewer logistical issues in transporting the kids back and forth between the homes.
when considering the needs of your children, there is almost no situation in which longer travel time between your home and that of your Co-parent is better for the children. Not only are you losing time that could be spent doing other things when you are in the car going back and forth in between homes, but it is also a potential source of stress for children to spend a great deal of their time each day on the school bus, in the drop off mine at school or even getting shuttled back and forth between mom and dad's house.
If you are able, you should consider your living situation as being the first place you should look towards win trying to figure out what type of position schedule can work best for your family. In the end, you may look at it and say that a possession schedule based on where you and your Co-parent live makes the most sense. One example that I can point to is parents creating geographic restrictions for the children to always reside in a certain zip code or even school district. This may be taking it a bit far considering the needs of your family, but every auction is on the table when it comes to making these parenting plans work.
Minimizing disruption for your children and stress for you and your Co-parent are not always factors that are considered when it comes to negotiating a workable possession schedule with your code. However, I think it is factors like these that go a long way towards helping families like yours transition into life after a family law case. While some disruptions may be avoidable to an extent, you can minimize those disruptions by creating a parenting plan that meets the needs of your family and is sensible in terms of logistics and transportation.
One of the major side effects of the pandemic has been a shift in how many people work. Work at home and hybrid work schedules are coming more and more popular and accepted by employers. Even if employers were hesitant to normalize these schedules Seekers have forced the hand of employers to at least consider regular hybrid work both in the office and at home. To that extent, you may be in a different position than you were two years ago as far as being able to confidently say that you work from home and have a schedule that reflects that change.
This can-do wonders for you and your children when it comes to the creation of a possession schedule and your family law case. This is even more true if your Co-parent also has a work-from-home schedule that allows for greater flexibility as far as when their day begins and ends. You and your Co-parent may even be able to create a possession schedule that allows for greater flexibility during the school week if both of you work from home. The options are limitless when there is a great degree of work-from-home availability for you and your Co-parent.
Another set of considerations that you may want to take note of when it comes to a possession schedule for your child is at the needs of your child will likely change over time as he or she gets older. This probably will not come as a surprise to you in many regards, but some folks going through family law cases do not consider the full extent of this issue when negotiating a possession schedule. I think that this is a major mistake. As such, you should think about what your child's needs are at this moment and What they are likely to be in the future.
Admittedly, this is something that can and likely will be a challenge for you and your family. It is difficult enough to Consider all these factors that have already been discussed in today's blog post for the present time. It is a whole new challenge to have to consider what the likely needs of your family will be in the future. There is so much that can change for your family not making grand assumptions about what the next 5 to 10 years will look like can seem almost like a waste of time.
However, you should at least begin to think about what the needs of your family are and how they can change in the future. For children, you may be in a position where your kids stand to benefit more from shorter and more regular periods of possession with both you and your Co-parent. When they are younger, transportation and simply moving the kids back and forth between their homes may be more of a challenge regularly than the two of you are willing to endure. As the father of four little kids myself, I know first-hand how difficult it can be getting little ones out the door.
With that in mind, maybe you and your Co-parent would want to create a schedule for your children that allows for an extended time with both of you while they are younger. As the children grow older and our easier to move back and forth between your homes you can transition into a situation where the kids have shorter periods of possession with both of you. All of this works even better when the two of you live close to one another. The shorter the distance between the two of you the more flexibility that is likely able to be endured.
Whatever you and your Co-parent ultimately agree on when it comes to a parenting schedule, one of the most important things you can do to ensure the viability of your plan is to make sure that the both of you understand your responsibilities as it pertains to making the possession schedule work well for your children. You can keep copies of your possession schedule handy both in print and digital formats. This way you can clear up any misunderstandings should they arise.
It sounds rather simple, but you can create color-coded calendars that can be hung up in your home and kept on your computer. This way your children can also be able to look ahead and plan for the different changes that come about in the possession schedule.
Questions about the material contained in today's blog post? Contact the Law Office of Bryan Fagan
If you have any questions about the material contained in today's blog post, please do not hesitate to contact the Law Office of Bryan Fagan. Our licensed family law attorneys offer free of charge consultations six days a week in person, over the phone, and via video. These consultations are a great way for you to learn more about the world of Texas family law as well as about how your family circumstances may be impacted by the filing of a divorce or child custody case.