Divorce is not something to be undertaken lightly, but sometimes it’s inevitable. Below is some important information for those couples with children who are planning to divorce.
Make sure that you draft parenting plans for the children. These plans should be designed with the children’s best interests being foremost. A good parenting plan addresses all of the following:
— Where shall the children live?
— Which parent is in charge of making the major decisions about the care and rearing of the kids?
— What are each parent’s roles in rearing the children?
— Who gets to spend what amount of time with the children?
Parents can save themselves time and money by coming to accord on their parenting agreement. This way, each can have their own lawyer approve the document or suggest changes that would better reflect the interests of the children, yet still protect parents’ rights to remain involved in their children’s lives.
Determining custody is vital, as custodial parents decide things like their children’s names, religion, schools, educational track, extracurricular activities and health care.
A parent can share in these decisions and not be the one with whom the children live. No matter which parent has physical custody of the kids most of the time, with joint custody, both parents have a say in the parenting decisions affecting their children’s lives.
Sole custody means that only one parent makes the important child-rearing decisions. Such is the case even when the other parent objects; however, in some instances, the parent having sole custody must first discuss the matter with their child’s other parent before deciding.
Source: Community Legal Education Ontario, “Separation and Divorce: Child Custody, Access, and Parenting Plans,” accessed July 08, 2016