Adapting Your Parenting Plan for the Holidays

November 30, 2020 Posted in Divorce

With the COVID-19 pandemic continuing to disrupt the usual order of business, this holiday season promises to be one like no other. With families all over the United States making significant adjustments to their holiday plans in the name of safety, divorced parents may be wondering how their parenting plan might be altered this year. Parents who would typically spend the holidays with their children may find themselves considering whether it's safe to do so; similarly, parents who would usually send their kids off to their former spouse this year may be having second thoughts.

If you’re concerned that your parenting plan for the holidays simply doesn’t make you feel comfortable, consider speaking with a Dallas child custody attorney to revisit the plan and make some changes. Whether or not you and your former spouse agree on how to handle the holidays during COVID-19, it’s important to have a transparent conversation and plan in place to ensure the season goes smoothly. 

Modifying Your Current Parenting Plan

Naturally, modifying a parenting plan will be much easier when co-parents are civil and agree that a workable solution is best for the whole family. While each parent may have a different idea about appropriate safety precautions during a pandemic, your Dallas child custody attorney can act as the voice of reason when settling your differences and help outline changes to your current agreement that seeks to reconcile each of your wishes with the upcoming holiday season. For example, if the non-custodial parent still wishes to retain their visitation rights for the holidays but the primary caregiver does not want the children attending holiday gatherings, you can alter your plan to include such a provision and ensure that the holidays remain safe.

These changes don’t need to be permanent - the parenting plan can also state that this modification is only temporary in light of COVID-19. You may even be able to argue that the change in parenting plan should also temporarily adjust your child support payments if you’re finding yourself spending more time with your children this holiday season and therefore need an extra influx of cash.

Hire a Dallas Child Custody Attorney If You Can’t Agree

If the relationship between you and your former spouse is contentious, then modifying your parenting plan for the holidays may be easier said than done. The decision to make any changes to your parenting plan may not be resolved by mediation or a joint agreement to do so. Instead, you may have to head to court to make the necessary adjustments to the plan, and the courts will require you to justify why you are seeking the modification. In this case, the courts will look to the Texas Family Code to determine whether your reason for seeking a change to your child custody plan is permissible under the law. 

In this case, you will most certainly want to have an experienced Dallas child custody attorney on your side. Because they uniquely understand the laws governing family law in Texas, they will be able to formulate the best arguments to ensure you can have your case heard and your custody plan altered. If you’re considering making some adjustments for the holidays, contact our offices today.