Anything Parenting

Wednesday, September 26, 2007

Choosing a Parenting Plan Verses a Custody Award

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When parents divorce with children involved it makes things harder not only for the parents but for the children. Today, more parents are weighting the options of a parenting plan verses a custody award. There are benefits to both along with drawbacks. When the court recognizes a parenting plan both parents and the children benefit. A custody award limits parental visits and can cause due stress on the parents and children.

The parenting plan works by allowing the parents to plan who has visitation when and when the child will live during different times. One example of a parenting plan is one week the child resides with the father and the other week the child resides with the mother. This means that each parent has two weeks a month with the child. This can also help with figuring child support.

With a custody award, one parent has permanent custody of the child and the placement of the child is with that parent. The other parent has visitation on scheduled days. This can be hard for a child that wants to be with both parents. They tend to have resentment of not having equal time with the parent if this was the case before the divorce.

The advantages of the parenting plan are geared more for the child but benefit both parents as well. They both share in the raising of the child, but in different households. If you cannot agree on a parenting plan or a custody award, the judge will order mediation that helps work through the issues. In many cases, the child is also appointed a Law Guardian/GAL, which works with the parents to benefit the child.

The parties involved will benefit by sharing the responsibility of child support and child rearing. The child benefits by having two parents taking an active role in their lives.

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