Most divorcing couples are able to resolve disagreements before their case heads to court. This is typically the result of some form of alternative dispute resolution, such as mediation.
While there are many details to work through, those associated with child custody are often the most important. A comprehensive parenting agreement is essential to the future well-being of you, your ex and your children.
A parenting agreement is designed to outline the relationship of each parent with their children in the future. Some of the things to include in the agreement are:
- Where the children will live
- If both parents or only one will have legal custody
- A visitation schedule for the non-custodial parent
- A rundown of where the children will spend special occasions, such as birthdays, holidays and vacations.
- How to make changes to the parenting agreement in the future
Does a parenting agreement require court approval?
Even if you work things out with your ex-spouse in mediation, a family law court still needs to approve the agreement.
In some cases, you may have to attend an informal court session during which the judge asks basic questions regarding the parenting agreement. This is meant to ensure that you understand the agreement, and that you're okay with the terms and conditions.
Don't violate your parenting agreement
When creating a parenting agreement, keep in mind that you must adhere to the conditions at all times.
Violating a parenting agreement is a big no-no, as you could face legal consequences. Furthermore, and depending on the circumstances, you may lose custody of your children or the right to visit them without supervision.
Even if you're good about following the rules of your parenting agreement, it doesn't mean your ex will do the same. They may continually violate the agreement, which causes tension between the two of you. It can also affect your relationship with your children.
It can take some time and negotiation to settle on a detailed and mutually agreed upon parenting agreement, but once you do, you'll feel better about your ability to raise your children in the best manner possible.
Visit our website for more information on a variety of family law matters in Indiana, including custody, child support, property division and more.