As the school year starts to wrap up, many parents start planning for summer vacation. If you have joint custody of a child, that planning comes with additional nuances.
Before making a big trip out of state or an extended trip nearby, consider the following tips to ensure your child has a happy summer to remember.
1. Check your custody agreement
If you have joint custody, you and your co-parent have entered a joint conservatorship. That means both parents share in the decision-making for the child. The courts typically set the schedule for both the custodial and noncustodial parents. If your trip lapses into time the other co-parent gets with the child, the situation may get tricky. Depending on your final agreement and parenting plan, you may need to provide written notice or gain permission to go out of state.
2. Communicate with your co-parent
As soon as you come up with a vacation idea, communicate it with the co-parent. This allows you to gain a sense of how they feel about the vacation and enables you to already have the right answers for any potential concerns. While discussing, provide as many details as possible. If the trip means extra time away from the other co-parent, consider coming up with a way to help them regain that time.
3. Stay willing to compromise
Planning a vacation comes with excitement but avoid letting it override your sensibilities. Your co-parent may already have started their own plans, which may not work with what you hope to happen. Although disappointing, staying flexible and willing to make changes remains important.
Ensuring you follow your custody arrangements and work with your co-parent may help ensure your perfect vacation with your child happens.