The summer months are meant to be a time when children and their parents can create lifelong memories. However, this may be more difficult to do when the police are called or parents are in court because of a child custody dispute. Parents who share custody of their children may be able to avoid disputes over who has the children over the summer through good planning and communication.
While custody during the summer months may be determined by a parenting plan, it isn't uncommon for adjustments to be made. For instance, a child may want to spend more time with friends or engage in activities that may need to be acknowledged when determining a custody schedule. If a parent plans to take a vacation during summer break, the other parent should be notified well in advance to allow for proper arrangements to be made.
As there may be changes to a parent's or a child's schedule over the summer, communication is critical. This can help resolve disputes that may arise and ensure that the best interests of the child are being upheld. It is important to note that custodial parents generally cannot withhold parenting time because of a dispute over child or spousal support. Conversely, parents cannot withhold support during disputes over a lack of parenting time.
Those who are looking to expand upon their parental rights but who are facing interference from their former spouse may wish to meet with their family law attorney to determine how best to proceed. It could be advisable under certain circumstances to file a petition with the court seeking a modification of the existing custody order.