The custody schedule (also known as a visitation schedule) that you settled on in your divorce (or that the court created for you) may not have taken your holiday plans into account. In fact, a visitation schedule that works quite well throughout the year may fall short during the holidays. The holidays are an important time for bonding with your children, so taking the time to plan this year’s holiday schedule with your custody schedule in mind is well worth the effort. If you have child custody concerns, an experienced Huntsville divorce attorney can help.
Customizing Your Visitation Schedule for the Holidays
When it comes to customizing your custody schedule for the holidays, you basically have three options that include:
- Working something out privately with your ex
- Seeking mediation
- Seeking a modification from the court
Working Things Out with Your Ex
Your holiday schedule matters. After all, the holidays are often the only time of year that we have the opportunity to get together with our far-flung relatives, and you want your children to grow up knowing their extended family. Further, the holidays mean family time and making memories, which makes them important for old and young alike. If you and your ex are on fairly good terms and you trust him or her to carry through with an agreement made between the two of you, you can coordinate your holiday plans together based on both of your schedules and on your personal goals. If you and your ex aren’t on reasonably friendly terms, however, you’ll probably need legal assistance.
If you’re looking for something more official than a simple agreement between you and your ex – or if you and your ex can’t come to such an agreement – mediation could be a good option. In mediation, the mediator will help you and your spouse (with your respective attorneys by your sides) reach a compromise that you can both live with regarding your customized holiday visitation schedule. Once signed, you’ll have a holiday game plan that you can rely on, and that better supports your holiday goals with your children – it can even be adopted for subsequent years if it continues to apply.
If private negotiation and mediation both fail to produce a holiday schedule that works for you, you may need to head back to court to have your child custody agreement modified by the judge. This is a more drastic measure, and the court will take what it considers to be in your children’s best interests when making its final decision. As such, you will need to produce compelling evidence that changing your holiday visitation schedule best serves your children’s needs.
If You Have Visitation Schedule Concerns, Contact an Experienced Huntsville Divorce Attorney Today
Your holiday schedule with your children is obviously very important to you as a parent and to all of you as a family. The compassionate divorce attorneys at Cloud Ryan & Rouse in Huntsville understand your concerns and are committed to helping you obtain a holiday schedule that allows you to make plans that work for you. We’re here to help, so please do not hesitate to contact us online or call us at 256-801-1000 for a free consultation today.