Summer is upon us and children across Los Angeles are anxiously awaiting the end of school. For kids, summertime should be a time of relaxation, where they can sleep in, eat ice cream, go to the beach or pool, ride their bikes and in general enjoy the extended free time at their hands. However, for children whose parents are divorced, summer can be stressful, particularly if the child's parents have not come to an agreement as to child custody and visitation during these months.
Most parents in California do not want to cause undue stress and anxiety to their children. Therefore, parents should make sure that they are on the same page with regards to child custody and visitation during the summertime. There are several steps parents can take to keep the summer months ones of pleasant memories for their child.
First, parents will need to sit down with one another to create a summer vacation parenting plan or revisit an existing one. Parents should try to be, if not amicable, at least civil, and they both should be allowed to express their desires. Once a plan is created, parents should make sure to follow it. If for some reason they find out down the road that they cannot follow the agreed-upon plan, they should let their ex know right away. Simply leaving with the child without notification can result in legal action and the loss of parenting time.
Sometimes parents are able to negotiate a summertime parenting schedule out-of-court. However, if they simply cannot see eye-to-eye, they may need to turn to the court for the creation of a parenting plan for the summer months. Sometimes these issues are addressed in the initial divorce decree, but as time passes the child's needs change and the parents' lives change. When this happens, revisiting the summertime parenting plan may be necessary. The sooner parents can agree on custody and visitation issues during the summer months, the more they'll be able to make the most of their vacation time with their child.