Summer is Nearly Here – Get those vacation plans nailed down

Should there be a National Divorce Law?

Summer is nearly here, and so is the end of the school year. Many parenting agreements allow for parents to have extended time with their children, so do not delay in advising the other parent which days you want. Often, parents are scheduling trips right now, reserving hotel rooms, buying plane tickets, which could create conflict if both parents want to travel out of town at the same time.

What happens if a conflict arises? Ultimately, the court wants to avoid the necessity of both parents coming to court. There are usually terms that establish whose preference will take priority in a given year, and maybe you have to mediate this conflict. Regardless, be proactive. You do not want to forego the big family event because the other parent wants to take your child on vacation at that same time. While courts prefer not having to decide which event is more important, a family reunion that only occurs every five years would be given more weight than a trip to the Cannon Beach, which could be rescheduled for another week.

When this occurs, or if a request to accommodate a schedule is made, I advise my clients to get their weekend time before they give up a weekend. For example, if it is your weekend and the other parent needs you to give it up, ask them to give up a weekend prior to you giving up your weekend because you never know how long it will take for you to get that make up time back. There is no guarantee that you would even get it back.

No matter what happens this summer, do not be caught off guard, and be proactive with the other parent, if you can. If they are uncooperative, then you may have to take it to court. These matters are not usually emergencies though because courts know that you have a calendar, and you should know that these months come around every year—they do not take anyone by surprise.  Summer is not an emergency, it is a time of year.

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