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Items to include in a parenting plan

Many divorcing couples in Florida may be under the assumption that if there is no dispute arising from the visitation schedule and parenting plan the parents are entering into, they do not need to file any papers in court. However, this is not true. Parties still need to complete and file a parenting plan form in all cases that involve time sharing of minor children, whether or not the parties are in dispute. If the plan is not filed, the court will create a parenting plan for the parents, even if they had been in agreement all along.

A parenting plan is established to ensure that minor children have frequent, continuing contact with their parents even after their marriage dissolves.

There are certain minimum requirements of the parenting plan, as laid out by the Florida Court systems. The plan should include details about how the parties are going to share responsibility for the daily tasks associated with raising the children and the specific time the minor children are going to spend with each parent. One parent should be designated for the responsibility of dealing with all school-related matters, healthcare and similar issues. Lastly, the plan should also include the technological methods parents will utilize to remain in contact with children.

It is best to include as much detail in the parenting plan as possible to ensure there are no disputes later on. Provisions should cover what would happen if one of the parties relocates, the method of transportation between the two homes and who will take care of that, religious affiliation, vacations and education related expenses and decisions. The more comprehensive the plan is, the less chance there is for complications later. An experienced family law attorney can review the document and ensure that all legalities are completed and that the document meets the best interests of the child.

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