Chadwick M. Layton, Esq.[i]
Harvey Waddell & Layton, P.A.
PARENTS WORKING TOGETHER AFTER DIVORCE
In my experience, parents that are going through a divorce very often agree that they will do everything they can to put the interests of their children first.
This priority of putting the children first and assuring that everything will be done by both parents to keep the children shielded from the divorce process should be recognized and supported by the divorce attorney chosen.
The first step to implement this agreement of the parties is often a meeting between the attorney and client to discuss and determine what a temporary parenting plan will look like for the child(ren).
This can be as simple as taking out a calendar for the month and writing “M” for mom and “D” for dad to designate the overnights that the child(ren) will spend with each parent during the month. School, extracurricular activities, work schedules for the parents and other important recurring events should be considered as part of the temporary parenting schedule. Considering and crafting a schedule that will make the children as comfortable as process is the number one priority.
This schedule may be used as a temporary tool to provide the children and the parents with a structure that they can depend on during the divorce. Knowing what to expect is very important for children.
The temporary schedule should not last more than three months. A formal and detailed parenting plan will be drafted by legal counsel as part of the final divorce solution. This parenting plan will addresses the health insurance costs for the children, day care costs if applicable, tax credits for the children, child support required for the children, holiday and regular time-sharing to be enjoyed by each parent until the children reach the age of majority.
If parents going through divorce are not able to work together and communicate well, there are tools available that can be implemented by divorce counsel to assist the parents. I have worked with clients to use talking parents and our family wizard, which are programs designed to assist parents going through that are having trouble communicating.
These tools allow both parents to communicate through a secure online portal regarding important events for the children, doctor appointments, pick up and drop off times, sporting and extracurricular activities, etc.
This tool is helpful for those parents that are dealing with a spouse that communicates in a toxic manner and will not limit the communication to important events for the children.
The law firm you choose in divorce should match your goals for divorce.
[i] Chadwick M. Layton is a partner and shareholder at Harvey Waddell & Layton, P.A., located in downtown Lake Worth.
Mr. Layton is also a member of the Florida Bar Family Law Section and the Susan Greenberg Family Law American Inn of Court of the Palm Beaches,
101 North J Street, Lake Worth
Phone (561) 585-4631