An integral part of a Georgia divorce where you share children is deciding how you will care for them. One element that the court requires you to complete is a parenting plan.
The parenting plan is your opportunity to determine how you and your ex will care for your kids post-divorce.
Who has the kids?
The primary piece of the parenting plan is to set out physical custody or parenting time with the kids. You should remain mindful of the children’s ages when creating the schedule. If you have a job that requires you to travel four days a week, then it is not wise to schedule parenting time during those days.
When a couple cannot agree on parenting time, the judge may have to devise a schedule. There is no standard on the books in Georgia, but it is common for the non-custodial parent to get the children every other weekend from Friday evening to Sunday evening.
Does the parenting plan change?
As your children grow, you should revisit the parenting plan and adjust as appropriate. The more independent they become, the less hands-on care they require. At a certain age, you may agree that they can stay home alone after school instead of going to a sitter.
What else goes into the parenting plan?
Your parenting plan should include some of the other guidelines you and your spouse agree to when caring for your children. These may include how you will deal with schedule changes, what time the children should go to bed and any dietary or activity restrictions.
The parenting plan serves an important function. You and your spouse should try to reach an agreement that keeps the kids’ needs at the forefront, or else a judge will do it for you.