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The importance of parenting plans in Arizona

On Behalf of | Feb 2, 2023 | Family Law

When Arizona parents go through a divorce, they find that parenting becomes a matter of planning and logistics. This is where a well-constructed parenting plan comes into play.

Your written parenting plan (which both you and your ex-spouse will need to agree to) will give your child and you and your child’s other parent consistency and predictability (which is definitely a good thing in this situation). It will also hopefully prevent any future conflict from happening between you and the co-parent. In order for the parenting plan to be successful, you and your ex-spouse will need to have open discussions and you will need to cooperate with one another.

Does the court need to get involved with our parenting plan?

If you and your ex are able to work out the terms of the parenting plan, the court would prefer not to get involved. Of course, if that is not possible, you have the support of the court if you both need it. The fact is that you and your ex-spouse understand your schedule and what works better than anyone else does so if you can manage to work it out between the two of you, it is the best possible scenario.

It is understood that when parents can agree on their own to a  parenting plan, the relationship between them will continue to be amicable with regard to their child and this often follows through for a large part of your child’s growing up years. On the other hand, if you and your ex are not able to agree to the parenting plan, your child will be the one to suffer the most and their mental health may suffer in the end.

What is included in a parenting plan?

The parenting plan will contain the detailed schedules for the time that you and your child’s other parent spend with the child. Additionally, the parenting plan will also contain a statement about who has legal custody. In the state of Arizona, the parents might have sole or joint legal custody and that will have been decided based on the best interests of the child from the beginning. If you have sole custody, that means that you are allowed to make major decisions on behalf of your child regarding health, education and religion. If you have joint legal custody, those major decisions will need to be made with your co-parent.

If you want your parenting plan to be successful, that means that both you and your ex have been able to agree about legal custody, that you share rights and privileges and that you agree to a schedule of the time that each of you will spend with your child. A written parenting plan is a mandate of Arizona so you don’t have any other option in that regard.

Sound legal advice from an Arizona family law attorney

If you and your ex-spouse are about to create a parenting plan, you understand how difficult and often painful it can be to work out all of the details and to agree to everything in the plan. This is where an Arizona family law attorney can really offer you support. You are undoubtedly going through a very difficult experience and your attorney can help to guide you all through the issues that you need to tackle so that you can emerge successful and ready for the next chapter.