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How to address custody exchanges in a parenting plan

| May 31, 2018 | Child Custody and Visitation

When both parents are responsible and show up for their child custody exchanges on time, without making last-minute changes and adjustments, the co-parenting relationship will run a lot smoother and be less complicated. However, not all parents will be responsible enough to adhere to the preplanned details relating to child exchanges. For this reason, parents may want to include some specific guidelines within the parenting plan. These guidelines will ensure that the other parent acts responsibly when it comes to the way child exchanges are carried out.

  1. Specify who can help carry out exchanges other than the parents. Do specific grandparents, family friends or other relatives have permission to help drop off and pick up the children?
  2. Who will transport the child to the exchange location and who will transport the child from the exchange location?
  3. Where will exchanges occur and on what days? Will it happen at one of the parent’s residences on a specific day? Will it happen at a different parent’s residence on another day? Will the parents meet in the middle somewhere convenient? Will the exchange happen when one of the parents pick the child up at school?
  4. Include a plan for how the parents will communicate and come to an agreement if the exchange procedure needs to change.
  5. Include language that explains what will happen if one of the parents is late. Perhaps, if the parent is ten minutes late to pick up his or her child, then the visitation or exchange is deemed to be canceled and the parenting time of the other parent will be voided for that week.

Do you want to create an appropriate parenting plan for your family? Study your legal rights and options under state family law to determine the parenting plan and child custody arrangements that fit you and your family’s current circumstances.

Source: CustodyXChange, “Parenting Time and Exchanges Provision Examples,” accessed May 31, 2018


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