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Avoiding Custody & Visitation Disputes During Summer Break

A Guide for Coparents in Tennessee

Summer break is an exciting time for kids, but it can also be a source of stress for divorced parents. Coordinating visitation and custody schedules during the summer months can be difficult, and if disputes arise, they can quickly escalate into legal battles.

As a divorce and family law firm in Tennessee, we understand the challenges that coparents face during the summer months. In this blog post, we'll provide an overview of Tennessee's parenting plan and visitation requirements for divorced parents and offer tips for resolving disputes and planning summer activities with your coparent.

A Review of Tennessee Visitation Requirements

First, let's review parenting plans and visitation requirements for divorced parents in Tennessee. A parenting plan is a document that outlines custody arrangements, visitation schedules, and other details related to the care of your children. Tennessee law requires divorcing parents to submit a parenting plan as part of their divorce agreement. The plan should include a detailed visitation schedule that specifies when each parent will spend time with their children, including holidays and school breaks.

Review our blog for more information on what should be included in a parenting plan.

Tips for Planning Summer Trips Post-Divorce

During the summer months, it's important to review your parenting plan and make adjustments if necessary. If your children are enrolled in summer programs or have other activities that conflict with your regular visitation schedule, you may need to coordinate with your coparent to accommodate their new schedule.

It's important to communicate with your coparent and confirm agreed-upon changes in writing. If you can't agree on changes to your parenting plan, you may need to seek legal assistance to resolve the dispute.

Keep reading for more summer planning tips for coparents.

Begin Planning Well in Advance

Planning vacations and other summer activities can also be a source of conflict for divorced coparents. If you're considering a trip and it affects your visitation schedule, it's a good idea to discuss it with your coparent well in advance. Be prepared to compromise and offer alternative visitation times if necessary. It's also important to be transparent about your plans and provide your coparent with all of the information they need to feel comfortable with your travel arrangements.

Consider What Will Benefit Your Kids the Most

When planning summer activities with your coparent, it's important to consider your children's best interests. When appropriate, encourage your coparent to be involved in the planning process, and be open to their suggestions. This may mean compromising and adjusting your plans to ensure a smooth, stress-free outcome for your children.

For example, suppose one parent's plan to take the kids to an amusement park conflicts with the other parent's plans to take the kids to visit relatives out of state. Both trips offer great benefits to the children; you and your coparent might want to work on scheduling to ensure the children can do both. This may mean contacting airlines to change plane tickets or going back to your employer to see if you can change the dates of your already-approved PTO.

Remember that your children have a right to spend quality time with both parents, and your coparenting relationship will be stronger if you can work together to create memorable summer experiences for your children.

Get Legal Help When You Need It

You might want to legal guidance if you cannot resolve a custody or visitation dispute directly with your coparent. A family law attorney can advise on the best course of action to protect your rights and help you ensure that your children's best interests are met. At Casey, Simmons & Bryant PLLC, we've helped countless families navigate complex custody and visitation disputes, and we can help you too.

Summer break can be a challenging time for divorced coparents, but with the right tools and resources, you can avoid disputes and create memorable experiences for your children. By reviewing your parenting plan, communicating effectively with your coparent, and seeking legal guidance when necessary, you can work to prioritize your children’s best interests and move towards a more positive coparenting relationship.

If you need assistance with a custody or visitation dispute in Tennessee, contact Casey, Simmons & Bryant PLLC today.