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Spring break is coming up. Do you have a parenting plan?

Some divorced parents have outlined a written parenting plan that includes provisions relating to custody and visitation for children of the marriage. However, many of these parenting plans only detail basic provisions and fail to include details about vacation schedules, such as a child’s spring break.

Given that spring break for many kids is approaching, divorced parents with school-aged children are encouraged to execute a parenting plan to accommodate the vacation period. It can be helpful for everyone, including the kids, to know what to expect when the time comes.

Considerations when developing a parenting plan for spring break

Everyone’s situation is different. An agreement for one family may not be suitable for another. However, there are a few questions all parents, regardless of the situation, should consider when determining a parenting plan for spring break:

  • Which parent will the children stay with while they are out of school if neither parent has plans to take time off or go out of town?
  • If both parents work and have no plans to take vacation time during spring break, who will watch the children during working hours?
  • If one parent plans to take the kids on vacation for the week, will the arrangement begin after the end of the school day before spring break starts or at the beginning of the day that spring break begins?

Detailing plans in writing

After parents agree to a custody or visitation arrangement for spring break, it’s important to get the plans in writing. Some parents may think a verbal arrangement is acceptable, particularly if the plans are simple and straightforward. However, a written document can reduce or eliminate any conflict that may arise in the future about what was actually agreed upon.

A contingency provision

Parents should also consider including a contingency provision in the written agreement in the event that something happens to one party or an emergency arises. This way, neither has to struggle to figure out a last-minute plan.