Co-parenting After Divorce

When a couple with children under the age of 14 decides to get divorced, Massachusetts family court requires that parents take a class to learn how to co-parent. Court-approved classes are usually held at family service agencies with two 3-hour classes. (Parents do not need to attend the same class on the same day.) Upon completion, the parent receives a certificate that he or she will need to show the court.

While a co-parenting class won't work miracles, it certainly helps parents think about the issues they will face now that they will be parenting separately. Perhaps it's unfortunate that unmarried parents aren't also required to take the coparenting class because they face the same issues.

If you are considering divorce or separation and want to learn more about co-parenting after divorce, check with the family court in your area to get a list of agencies offering the class. Unmarried couples CAN take the class, but are not legally required to do so.

Developing a Parenting Plan

We are Quincy, MA, child custody attorney Will Driscoll, Jr. and attorney Laurie A. Sanford. We work with married and unmarried parents to help them develop parenting plans and child custody agreements. Parents who have taken the co-parenting class usually receive an outline that breaks down every possible activity or life event that may require a decision, and big and small issues that must be considered, such as

  • Where will children be for holidays and vacations?
  • What are the expectations for attending school events and teacher conferences?
  • What about school activities?
  • Who will do the driving?
  • Who will pay for college?

The parenting plan we develop will form the basis of your child custody agreement in effect after your divorce (or separation).

Modification of Custody Agreements

Situations change and as you co-parent together through the years you may find that you need a modification [link to modifications] of your custody agreement or child support order. A judge could change your original order if you have to change jobs, have an increase or loss of income, remarry or move in with a new partner (cohabitation for more than 3 months may reduce the amount of support a custodial parent receives).

But not every problem can be solved by a judge. In some cases, family mediation can help you arrive at livable solutions to co-parenting problems. We am a trained and experienced mediator.

Contact Hingham Family Lawyer Wilfred C. Driscoll, Jr.

Learn more about how I can help you take what you've learned about co-parenting and turn it into a workable parenting plan. We can assist you with your child custody case or with mediation of parenting issues after divorce. Contact us, Quincy child custody attorney Wilfred C. Driscoll or Laurie A. Sanford, at 508-672-8718 or email our Hingham family law office. If you need a good divorce lawyer in Youngstown, OH Robert Murdock is very good. Law Office of Robert J Murdoch

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