The holidays can be a logistical nightmare, and the coordination becomes even more challenging when more people are involved. In-laws, out-laws, exes, and children – we all want time together with those we love most.
The problem is we can’t have it all when we’re managing a time-sharing schedule with our ex, but we can find an arrangement that everyone can agree on.
Look to the Parenting Plan
The parenting plan issued at the time of divorce will outline the time-sharing plan for regular time and the holidays. Most of the year will follow a set schedule, which may include alternating weekends or some other court-ordered arrangement where time is split equally between parents.
The holidays, however, are treated a bit differently. Regardless, the plan should still be set in advance (the judge will make sure of this). Advanced planning helps minimize potential conflict with your ex and keeps everyone’s energy focused on spending quality time with their children – rather than fighting expensive battles in court.
How to Share the Holidays
Each family has its own holiday traditions and celebrations, but there are some common ways many families choose to split time during major events including birthdays, Christmas, and New Year’s. Examples include:
- Alternating the holiday every other year – One parent gets the children on even years and the other parent gets them on odd years.
- Celebrating the holiday twice – This may mean celebrating Christmas on two different weekends.
- Splitting the holiday – This can be challenging if a lot of travel is involved, but one parent could have the kids for the morning and the other for the evening, for example.
While the end of the year brings some of the biggest holidays of the year, there are numerous times throughout the year when a potential change to the parenting plan may be needed. This could include 3-day weekends, birthdays or Mother’s and Father’s Day. If there is a need for a schedule change, it’s important to communicate any potential changes with your ex as communication break-downs can quickly escalate to full-blown court battles.
If you are going through a divorce or have questions or concerns about your existing parent plan, please don’t hesitate to get in touch with our team of Florida family law attorneys at the Vasquez de Lara Law Group.