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How to Create a Summer Custody Schedule

Summer break means school is out for children, and that means a perfect opportunity to escape for a vacation, head away for a weekend, or even to celebrate one of the numerous holidays that come up on our calendar each June, July, and August. However, it also means that you may need to adjust your schedule to accommodate even on days that don’t fall in one of these categories. If you and the other parent of your children are divorced, this means you will likely need to make temporary adjustments to your visitation schedules in order to accommodate both summer plans and the added responsibility of looking after the kids while they’re not in school.

Here are some tips for creating a summer visitation schedule that is fair to both parents and keeps summer enjoyable for the kids.

Start Early

Ideally, you’ll want to know what plans you wish to have during summer well before summer actually begins. This way, when you and the other parent discuss your summer break visitation schedule, you’ll know what weekends you wish to have the kids for (or, conversely, which weekends you may wish to have the other spouse take the kids). If you have any hard-set dates (such as plane tickets for travel), be sure to bring those up since they cannot be helped, but try to keep your options open as long as possible. If you have any of these dates, you’ll want to discuss your plans earlier to give the other parent as much notice as possible.

Depending on when your kids get out of school for the summer, you should have your visitation schedule finalized by no later than early May in order to give plenty of time for last-minute changes that might occur. The absolute last thing you want to do is come to an agreement a few days before summer begins and then realize you need to alter the terms because you forgot something.

Be Flexible

You might have your own plans for summer, but that doesn’t mean the other parent doesn’t have any of their own. If they also wish to take the kids on a trip, be flexible and show them the same courtesy they showed you. This means you may not receive visitation during your agreed-upon period or as much as you typically receive, but be willing to accept this in exchange for your plans.

It’s a good thing to develop a structure for who will have the children and when, but be willing to modify that structure to accommodate travel or activity plans that your kids or the other parent may have. The more you discuss ahead of time and the more willing you are to work with the other parent, the better off your visitation schedule will be.

If you need assistance developing a summer visitation plan, Bilodeau Capalbo, LLC can help! With more than 35 years of combined experience, our Rhode Island family law attorneys have the knowledge to help you and the other parent create a fair and balanced visitation schedule for the summer. We always handle each family law matter with the highest levels of care and attention and know the importance of prompt response when you’re in need of quality counsel.

Call Bilodeau Capalbo, LLC today if you need help with a visitation matter! Request a free case evaluation by dialing (401) 400-8182.

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