A child custody schedule is especially important for children and parents who have recently gone through a divorce. Parents who develop a child custody schedule can have clear outlines of what responsibilities, rights and obligations each parent is expected to uphold.
There is no one child custody schedule that works for everyone. In other words, every custody schedule is unique. It can take some time before parents and children adapt to a custody schedule.
If a schedule isn’t working, then parents may agree to alter it. There are also some changes that may be necessary depending on the situation. Here’s what you should know:
When a child’s needs have changed
Children can develop medical illnesses or disabilities as they grow. A medical condition can greatly affect a custody schedule. Parents may need to negotiate a new custody schedule if their children’s medical needs affect each parent’s ability to care for them. One parent, for example, could have more custody time if they are better equipped to handle their children’s illness or disability.
A medical condition may not be the only reason to alter a custody schedule. Parents may agree to an altered custody schedule if their child joins after-school extracurriculars or summer camp or if their child wishes to spend more time with one parent.
When a parent’s work or school schedule changes
Most custody schedules are made to work around each parent’s work and school schedules. However, if a parent’s work or school schedule is altered and can’t be changed, it may conflict with a custody schedule. This may lead to a discussion between parents on how an altered custody schedule would best help them maintain their responsibilities.
It’s not always easy to discuss how much time each parent has with their children. Parents who understand their legal rights may be better equipped to discuss a child custody schedule.