Now that summer is here and school has ended for most, many parents are planning vacations and excursions to take advantage of the warm weather. While summer vacations are always exciting to plan, the process can also be stressful. This is especially true for separated or divorced parents who have minor children. If you want to avoid child custody conflicts over summer vacation, these tips may help.
Don’t Wait Until the Last Minute
If you’re certain you want to go on vacation with your children, start sorting things out with your divorced spouse as soon as possible. For example, if you want to take the kids on vacation out-of-state in July, don’t wait until the week before to start the discussion. Wait until the last minute and chances are you won’t be able to get things resolved in time. This also means that you should think about vacation far in advance so that you can make a plan and present it to your ex-spouse for approval. Before you approach your spouse, have the location, date, and duration of the vacation figured out.
Your existing custody order or agreement may address vacations. If this is the case, stick to the provisions in the divorce agreement.
In some cases, if you have planned your vacation in advance but your ex-spouse objects, you will have the time to file a motion with the court. The court order will allow you to override the objection.
Keep the Golden Rule in Mind
When dealing with child custody conflicts over summer vacation, keep the golden rule in mind: Do to others what you would want done to you. If your spouse wants to go on vacation with the children, don’t give him or her a hard time unless you have a good reason. Also, keep in mind that you will eventually have to ask your ex-spouse for permission to take the children on vacation. If you object to the request of your divorced spouse now, it is likely he or she will do the same to you. For the sake of peace and your children, be willing to grant favors to your ex-spouse, particularly if your children will enjoy the vacation.
Summer vacation should be fun and happy for you and your children, which is why child custody conflicts should be avoided when possible. For more information about how to avoid child custody conflicts over summer vacation, or if you have questions on whether your divorce agreement or court order allows you to take your children on vacation, don’t hesitate to contact a Maryland divorce lawyer.