Articles Tagged with summer vacation

As the weather warms and spring gets closer, many people take time to refresh and renew. Some people do spring cleaning and get rid of items they don’t need anymore. Others hit the mall to get some new spring and summer fashions. As family law attorneys, we’d like to remind you of some other things you might want to consider (or reconsider) as the season changes.

The first two considerations specifically relate to unmarried or divorced parents with children. If you have a child that will be graduating from high school in 2014 or 2015 it might be a good idea to consult an attorney about how (and/or if) you and the child’s other parent will afford college. There are time limits on when requests for post-secondary education expenses may be filed, so you want to be sure you know when the deadline in your case is, and that you file before that. (In many cases, the deadline is the expiration of the order of child support.) If your child will be graduating in 2014, you will want to consider this issue a priority! If you are going to speak with an attorney, you will want to do so as soon as possible.

The second consideration for parents is whether they have their residential time with their child planned out for summer vacation. Many parenting plans require that dates for residential time be communicated to the other party during the spring. This can vary, and some plans require it even earlier. This is also a time you might want to consider whether a modification of your parenting plan has become necessary. It might be possible to get a modified plan in place prior to summer break.

The summer is a busy time of year for many families. This can be especially true for two-home families (i.e. families in which the parents of the children are not married and/or live in separate homes). In addition to attending summer camps, daycare, playdates and barbeques kids are often experiencing a different residential schedule than they are used to.

Many two-home families vary their school schedule from their summer schedule within their parenting plan or residential schedule. This often makes sense, because the children’s schedules can vary so widely from their school year schedule. Many non-primary residential parents use this as an opportunity to spend more time with their kids. Some use it as a time to travel, camp, or just enjoy additional time together. For many, their summer schedule is more enjoyable than their school year schedule. Some families maintain their school year schedules during the summer. This can be due to work conflicts (i.e. the parents have to work traditional schedules year round and thus would be unable to enjoy the additional time with the kids anyway), or to provide continuity for the kids.

No matter what the reason, or the schedule, if it works for the parents and the kids, the plan is likely a keeper. However, if you don’t currently have a parenting plan or residential schedule in place, or if your parenting plan doesn’t fit you and your kids’ current needs, please contact us so that we can discuss your options for this summer or next.

As summer vacation draws near, thoughts of swimming pools, suntan lotion and backyard barbeques fill most of our minds. But for parents facing their summer parenting plan schedule, other thoughts might be coming to mind. Many families with parenting plans have one residential schedule for their children during the school year and another for the summer. This means that in the coming months, these families have to adjust to more than just getting used to seeing a bit more sun in the sky.

Kids often spend more time during the summer with the parent that they don’t reside the majority of the time with during the school year. This can mean excitement and some stress for the kids and the non-majority parent. There are adjustments to family schedules, how much food to make for meals, limits on screen-time, the setting of summer bedtimes, and more. For the parent with whom the children reside the majority of the time it can often mean less time with the kids. Some parents use this as a time to do some adults-only traveling, or a time to do some summer cleaning without frequent interruptions from the kids.

For most families, summer parenting plans can be personalized to the needs of a particular family. If the kids are young they may do better with an every-other-week rotating schedule (or perhaps even maintaining the school year schedule). When kids are older, some families choose to have a three to five week block of time with each parent. Still other families choose to maintain the school year schedule. The plan should be personalized to meet the needs of a particular family.