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Can Your Parenting Plan Handle Summer Vacation?


Congratulations on making it through a school year of co-parenting with your ex-spouse.  You are finally starting to believe what everyone has been saying, namely that co-parenting gets easier as time goes on; you are already feeling confident about the next school year.  Being the only adult responsible for supervising homework and transporting children to after school extracurricular activities was tiring, but going to Chick-fil-A with your kids after soccer practice has become a highlight of your week.  The first few weekends when your kids were at your ex’s house, you were desperately lonely, but now you welcome the opportunity to catch up on sleep and housework.  Now that summer is here, you must rise to a whole new challenge.  Can you cope with the endless litany of “I’m bored” every evening when you come home from work?  Can you keep your cool when your ex tries to veto your summer travel plans?  The solution to most common summer co-parenting problems lies in a well-crafted parenting plan.  For help drafting a parenting plan that will hold up to the challenges of summer vacation, contact a Mississauga child custody lawyer.

Summertime Co-Parenting Challenges

When you draft a parenting plan, you should schedule every detail, even if this means that this takes longer to finalize your divorce.  Unless you are sure that your children will attend summer camp on weekdays in the daytime, the “weekdays with Mom, weekends with Dad” schedule probably will not work in the summer.  It would mean that Mom comes home every evening to a house full of preteens who have been idle all day.

As for summer camp, it presents its own set of challenges.  Child support orders assume that summer camp is a discretionary expense, not a necessity.  Some former spouses disagree strongly about what constitutes a reasonable price for summer camp, and the courts are unlikely to order your ex-spouse to shell out money for a fancy summer camp.  Your parenting plan does, however, enable you to set rules about how you and your ex-spouse will approach decisions about extracurricular activities.

You May Need to Adjust Your Schedule to Accommodate Teens’ Schedules, No Matter the Season

Perhaps the biggest co-parenting challenges come when your children are just a few years away from aging out of the parenting plan.  Teens tend to have schedules that do not fit neatly into a court-ordered parenting plan.  They might have part-time jobs or take driving lessons.  They might even visit relatives out of town, without their parents, or participate in a study abroad program for high school students.  You and your ex may need to adjust your parenting plan to accommodate your teen’s new schedule.  You will also need to refer to your parenting plan, and perhaps even rely on your lawyer, to resolve disputes about how to pay for your teen’s steps toward independence.

Contact Zagazeta Garcia LLP About Peaceful Co-Parenting

A family law attorney can help you rise to the challenge of summertime co-parenting.  Contact Zagazeta Garcia LLP in Mississauga, Ontario to discuss your case.



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