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A Well Drafted Parenting Order or Shared Parenting Plan Can Avoid Problems

custody lawyer, child custody lawyer, custody lawyers, child custody lawyers, custody attorney, child custody attorney, child custody attorneysVirginia Cornwell is a Franklin County Family Law Attorney and an OSBA Certified Family Relations Specialist.  

As the old saying goes, an ounce of prevention is worth a pound of cure.  Likewise, a well drafted parenting order (sole custody) or shared parenting plan (shared parenting) can avoid a multitude of problems.  What this means is that a parenting decree or shared parenting plan which anticipates problems and deals with them in advance can make for long term success in the co-parenting relationship and perhaps avoid the parties having to go back to court after the first decree.

CALL NOW  at (614) 225-9316

family law attorney, family lawyer, family law lawyer, family law lawyers, family law attorneys, family attorney, family attorneysThe parties to a parenting decree (order) or shared parenting plan are going to be parenting together until the child turns 18.  That is a long time with a lot of possibility for change.  Although courts tend to want to make orders that only deal with the situation in front of the court as it exist today, by agreement, the parties can put terms into their decree or shared parenting plan that address possible future changes.  The most notable example of such a change would be a move.  Another example would be adding language that says that the person paying child support can only claim the child as a tax dependent if they are current in their child support obligation.

CALL NOW  at (614) 225-9316

child custody lawyers, custody lawyers, custody law firm, child custody law firm, custody specialist, visitation lawyer, visitation lawyersBeyond just the big things, sometimes it can be helpful to address the little things in advance, in order to remove the other parent’s incentive to fool around with parenting time.   For example, it may be a good idea to put specific provisions in your parenting plan stating what will happen if the child is sick?  How sick does the child need to be for parenting time to be rescheduled?  When will it be made up?  If you it to be clear that either parent is capable of caring for a sick child, and parenting time will not be missed for illness, absent the agreement of the parties, in writing (text message), then your parenting plan should say that.  If your ex has a history of denying you parenting time on this basis, you want very specific language in your parenting plan.

CALL NOW  at (614) 225-9316

If your ex has a habit of failing to appear for his or her parenting time, you may want a provision that states that if he or she has not appeared for three parenting times in a row, they do not have parenting time unless they give two weeks notice.

These are just a few examples of how a well crafted plan or order can deal with parenting troubles, and help to minimize conflict by providing the solution in advance.

CALL NOW  at (614) 225-9316

dissolution lawyer, custody lawyer, paternity lawyer, divorce lawyer, divorce attorney, custody attorney, child custody attorney, child custody lawyerNeed some help? We would be happy to schedule a consultation with you.  Please give us a call, and one of our Family Law Attorneys will meet with you to discuss your case.

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Virginia Cornwell is an Ohio State Bar Association Certified Family Relations Specialist.

DISCLAIMER – Read it, it’s important!


  1. C says

    I filed contempt on my child’s mother for refusal to let me see our child, I agreed to drop the contempt if our visitation went back to the way it was AND I would be able to have my daughter Christmas and drop her home to her mother the next day the 26th…The mother and I have always alternated Christmas day. We would have our child for the whole day and then drop her off the next day.The mother along with her lawyer agreed to these terms and I dropped the contempt I filed on her. This was all done in front of the judge. The mother now is saying that she never agreed to these terms and is saying that I cannot have our daughter for the full Christmas day. This agreement saw done in court, in front of a judge, my question is do I have a case to refile contempt on her since she lied to an agreement in court?

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