Going through a divorce brings forth unwanted hassles and hustles, and parents should plan for their children. A parenting plan template helps incorporate every detail that pertains to the child in the plan. 

When divorce finally becomes a reality, keenness must be employed to ensure that children are well catered for. A parenting plan must be put in place, which will showcase significant decisions affecting the child directly. Your family attorney will help you develop a parenting plan that will be submitted to the court.

Nevertheless, it would be best if you considered using a parenting plan template that will enable you to simplify developing a parenting plan. Through the template, you shall manage to highlight details that entail your child’s support and custody with a lot of ease.

Through this article, you will manage to gather information about the parenting plan template and why you should consider using one. 

Why do you need a parenting plan?

Custody cases are tedious and demand a lot of planning. A parenting plan plays an integral role in establishing rules and order on how kids will be raised, cared for, and supported.

The parenting plan will be submitted before the judge for signing, which makes it a court order. Below are the reasons why you need a parenting plan. 

A parenting plan helps address the distinctive needs of your children. 

Kids are special and unique in their way, and they all have unique needs. Therefore, when undergoing a divorce, parents should plan to meet their kid or kids’ unique needs.

For instance, you need to understand your child’s clubs and understand who will be attending what club or available for the club’s needs. The idea is to understand how unique your child is and making plans for them. 

Helps with the smooth transition after divorce

A divorce between parents affects their kids immensely, more so where kids are not planned for. Nevertheless, where a parenting plan is available, kids will never suffer the wrath of the divorce, and there will be no guesswork on how certain things are to be done.

Generally, chore distribution will be coherent. For instance, the plan helps dictate who walks kids to school on what day and who will be picking them up when. 

Helps deal with emotional and psychological torture

Children are fragile, and when parents separate, children can feel responsible. Nevertheless, it would help if you always focused on eliminating the guilt that your kids might generate through developing a successful parenting plan.

The plan will dictate what happens when which brings about order. If there are orders and good coordination between the parents, kids tend to relax, knowing that things will be okay. Emotional and psychological torture in kids is costly as it can affect their performance in school. 

The child will also have peace of mind knowing that a parent will always pick them from school or attend a specific concert. Imagine a scenario where a kid is done with their soccer practice, and there is no one to pick them up since you failed to make plans. The consequences of such an incident are troubling and might affect the child’s wellbeing. 

An opportunity to make smart choices for the kids together

Every parent is entitled to be part of their child’s life. Through a parenting plan, parents manage to make smart and indisputable choices together. For instance, parents will agree on whom to have kids on what weekends, which to drive kids to school when, or even who to take kids out on which day, and so on. A parenting plan helps parents and kids develop a sense of belonging. 

Sections of a parenting plan template 

You have three options for using a parenting plan template; download one, have your lawyer avail one, or design yours. Whether you download it or design one for yourself, you should always consider the following sections. 

Legal custody

There are so many decisions concerning the kids from their healthcare, education, and even religious affiliation. The parenting plan template that you use or develop must highlight who is responsible for making what decisions.

There are instances when one parent takes legal custody of making decisions, and there are other instances when parents share legal custody. When legal custody is shared, you should consider communicating the fact to the court. 

Who has physical custody?

You need to develop a parenting time agreement. Time allocation should be highlighted to avoid unnecessary misunderstandings. For instance, you can agree with one parent sharing 40% of kids’ time and the other sharing 60%. Therefore, ensure determining which weekends a parent spends with the kids and what days of the week they spend time with what parent. 

Visitation transport needs

Your kids will have to travel from one parent’s home to the other. It will help if you plan their transportation. You must determine who will pick kids when. The same applies to when kids need to be transported to the doctor or school. 

Vacations

It would help if you also considered addressing the issue of vacation and travel. It’s not always when kids will be available for travel, and you need to address the matter and determine when a specific parent should take their children for travel or vacation. 

Holiday 

It will help if you make realistic plans for the holiday schedules. You need to understand who takes the kids for what holiday. The best way to handle the holiday schedule is to alternate yearly.

Some holidays include Christmas, Labor Day, Thanksgiving, Memorial Day, New Year’s Day, Veterans Day, and Independence Day. Other special days only relate to your family, and you need to plan for them, including kid’s birthdays. 

Children’s records

Kids have education, medical, and other essential records. It would be best if you made plans on children’s record access. Where parents share legal custody, they should have shared access to their kids’ records.

Nevertheless, it is in your best interest to permit access to children’s records for both parents, even where there’s no shared legal custody. 

Successful parenting takes a lot of planning time, more so where you have undergone a divorce with your children’s father or mother. Therefore, ensure to consider using a parenting plan template that will help you make parenting plans with a lot of ease. 

What should be included in a parenting plan?

1. Legal custody
2. Who has physical custody?
3. Visitation transport needs
4. Vacations
5. Children’s records