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The summer is almost here, which means that it is time for parents who are sharing child custody to make plans for the school-less months. This isn’t as easy as it sounds, especially when you have to make plans for child care, summer vacation trips and activities your child is involved in. Planning early can help you and your ex to get everything hammered out before the last minute.

First, you should look at the child custody orders to see what stipulations are present for the summer. This is your starting point for planning things for your child to do over the summer months, as well as your starting point for planning your vacation trip. You must look at the dates or other time-sensitive points that dictate where your child will be when.

Once you know what the orders say, you can work on making your plans. If there is a chance that what you are planning is going to interfere with your ex’s time with your child, you need to address that now. For example, if you are supposed to get your child back in your custody at 3 p.m., but a flight to the vacation destination is supposed to leave at noon, you need to work with your ex to find out if he or she will work with you on this. Remember that compromise is a two-way street, so be willing to work with your ex too.

Finally, make plans to keep in touch with your ex. This is more for your child’s sake. Your child might want to let your ex know all about the fun things going during the summer. Be willing to let this happen freely.

If there are any issues that you can’t come to an agreement on, you may need to turn to the court to make decisions. Taking this action early is important to help you avoid last minute stress.

Source: FindLaw, “Child Custody Over the Summer: Dos and Don’ts,” Betty Wang, JD, accessed March 02, 2017