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Have Joint Custody Of Your Child? Take These Precautions When Planning A Vacation With Them

Law Blog

If you have joint custody, you need to ensure that vacations with your child don't ruin the good relationship you have with the other parent. Careless vacations are the kinds of things that instigate custody modification battles. Here are four precautions to take to ensure that doesn't happen:

Inform the Other Parent In Advance

Even if you liked taking impromptu vacations before your separation, this is not the time to do it. Taking an impromptu vacation with the kids can easily create disagreement with the other parent. It can even be misinterpreted as an attempt at kidnapping, and may get mentioned at the next custody modification hearing.

Although you may have significant latitude when making vacation plans, this only applies if you can reach an agreement with the other parent. Therefore, consider your custody order (that may include things like how far in advance you need to notify the other parent and how long each vacation can last) when making the preparations.

Give the Other Parent Your Itinerary

By giving the other parent your itinerary, you ensure that they will know where the child is at any particular time. This simple act of courtesy will go a long way in reassuring the other parent of your child's safety. Bad things are always going on around the world or even in different states within the country. There are mass shootings, disease outbreaks, and terrorist acts. Without giving the other parent your itinerary, they will be worried sick every time something like that appears in the news.

Get Copies of Important Documents

Now that you are not living together, it's possible that one or both of you doesn't have all the important documents relating to your child's well-being. Such documents include health insurance documentation, immunization documentation, details on current medication and similar things. Even if such documentation isn't required for travel, have it in your possession before leaving for vacation. This isn't just necessary for the child's well-being; the other parent may accuse you of not caring for your child if you travel without such things.

Involve the Children

Finally, it's a great idea to involve the children in your vacation planning. It's a good way of helping the children understand that both of their parents have agreed to the vacation. Otherwise, it might look like a case of parental alienation, where one parent plasters the kids with goodies with the hope of rousing the child's disrespect or fear of the other parent.

If you have joint custody and are unsure about whether you can plan a vacation with your child, talk to a family law attorney like Ritter & LeClere APC Attorneys At Law to help you go over your custody agreement and decide the best course of action.


27 July 2016