Five Tips To Help Parents Manage A Separation
When separating from your partner, the intensity of emotions often can cloud your judgment and influence major decision making. However, if they are decisions concerning the upbringing of your children, you need to work together with your spouse to reach an agreement that works best for your children and you.
Every individual circumstance is complicated, and most of the time, it makes sense to consult a legal expert to address separation issues and increase awareness of your rights. As a recognized law firm based out of Towson, Md., at Mosson Law, LLC, we understand that separation is a delicate time for most couples. To relieve some of the stress involved, we have put together a list of five tips to help parents manage a separation.
Tip #1: Brainstorm a plan.
If you are separating and have children involved, it is critical first to figure out how you and your spouse are going to handle the custody schedule. Here are four questions you should consider asking when formulating a plan:
a. What will work best for your children?
b. Do you need help figuring this out?
c. Can you and your counterpart negotiate this or is help necessary?
d. What does your old budget look like, and what will your separated budget look like?
Tip #2: Get professional help if needed.
The Russian writer, Tolstoy stated in his novel Anna Karenina that, “Every happy family is happily alike, but each unhappy family is unhappy in their own special way.”
For a family undergoing a separation, it is a difficult time as you know. There is a lot at stake.
If you need help, or the support of family and/or friends, or legal advice and counseling for one or more parents, or legal help to deal with someone’s dangerous behavior, please seek it.
If you feel threatened by your partner, even if you are not sure the 'threats are serious', that is a situation where you should seek legal advice and other help.
A legal consultation, for instance, with a family lawyer is often a one-time cost that will help you gain clarity on the partner's behavior, and what you can do about it.
Tip #3: Draft a separation agreement.
Parents who are separating can create a separation agreement before they appear at court. In fact, married parents do not need to divorce simply because it may be right to separate, and a custody schedule is needed.
Separating parties can seek legal advice, and the help of lawyers and mediators, to create a separation agreement.
Tip #4: Create a holiday schedule.
As a separated parent, you have to figure out how holidays will be shared with your children. Sharing holidays will depend on preference, culture, religion, and negotiation.
For instance, if you and your separating partner have different religions, it may make sense to permit the partner to have the children for their religious holidays important only to them, and the same might go for you: a win-win.
Other times, for instance with Thanksgiving, people may alternate the holiday each year. Others might alternate Thanksgiving itself, while permitting the non-holiday parent to have Saturday-Sunday of Thanksgiving weekend, so that "Thanksgiving weekend" in essence alternates:
Weds. night-Fri. night (parent 1, even years) (parent 2, odd years)
Friday night-Mon. school drop off (parent 2, even years) (parent 1, odd years)
It really depends and this is just an example.
Tip #5: Keep your child’s best interest in mind.
When handling custody matters, Maryland law tasks the courts to consider above all else, the child’s best interest. It is in the general position of the court to allow children to live in an environment that as familiar as possible to them, and certainly, a safe one as far as possible. So, whether you want full or joint custody, stay focused on putting your kids’ needs first.
If you’re looking for an experienced lawyer to educate you about child custody, resolve separation issues, and achieve a favorable outcome, reach out to Gregg H. Mosson, Esq. at Mosson Law, LLC. Mr. Mosson has handled everything from negotiations among the parties prior to any divorce, to crafting a custody agreement, to litigation, Settlement Court, and trial before a Judge.
Mr. Mosson's areas of specialization include employment law, family law, and civil litigation. Mosson Law, LLC, also provides legal consultations on a scheduled basis.