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Your parenting plan matters: Stability and support

After divorce or once you and your spouse separate, you need to develop a plan for your children's care. Parenting time has to be balanced with your work and the life you have now that your marriage is ending. You must agree on how you'll raise your children and how you're going to split your time with them.

The primary thing to remember is that you must act in the best interests of your child or children. When deciding on a parenting plan, remember that most courts like to see both parents spending time with their children. Unless there is a reason to restrict one parent from seeing a child, it's normal for both to share custody.

There is no single custody plan that works best for every situation. Instead, you and your spouse need to sit down and think about what would work best for your kids, your schedules and your other responsibilities. If you live close together, it might be easier than if you live far apart from one another, since you'll have longer distances to consider in your parenting plan.

The kind of relationship you have matters as well. If you and your ex-spouse can't get along, you may have to use a third-party drop off or safe drop off area to transfer your children into the other parent's care. Your attorney can tell you more about this possibility if the situation is volatile.

No matter what you do, you have to put your children first. Working out a solid parenting plan helps you do this and provide stability following divorce.

Source: Coparently, "Parenting Time After Divorce or Separation," accessed May 11, 2018

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