Most divorces and child custody cases resolve by agreement. Usually, the parents are able to reach an agreement about custody and parenting without needing the court to issue a ruling. But if you’re going to make a custodial parenting plan, what needs to be in the plan? Here’s how to make a custodial parenting plan in Nevada from our Las Vegas child custody lawyers:
What Should be Included in A Custodial Parenting Plan?
A custodial parenting plan should include all of the major issues about your child’s upbringing. It should include who is going to exercise parenting time and on what schedule. You should decide who is going to make important decisions for the child. The rest of the details that you should include depend on your child’s situation and what rules you want to have for co-parenting.
Custodial Parenting Plan Checklist Nevada
Here are the things that you should include in a Nevada custodial parenting plan:
- Decision making for the child – Who will make major decisions for the child? Do the parents have to agree on decisions like school attendance, medical care, and religious upbringing, or will one parent be in charge of directing the child’s upbringing?
- Information sharing – Do both parents have a right to information about the child? Should each parent send the other school communications, notices of medical appointments, and other details?
- Parenting time – When is each parent going to spend time with the child? Parenting time schedules vary greatly. Some parents exercise joint physical custody with equal parenting time. But in long-distance parenting arrangements, that isn’t practical. And in some cases, a parent needs supervision to exercise their parenting time because of mental health or substance abuse issues. Parenting time is a large part of any custodial parenting plan, and your plan should be specific to the needs of the child and the situation of the parents.
- Holiday parenting time – Most parenting time schedules have exceptions to the typical parenting schedule for holidays. The parents might agree to alternate Christmas, Christmas Eve, Thanksgiving, the child’s birthday, and other important holidays.
- Transportation of the child – Who will transport the child for parenting time? Will the child fly alone if the parents live far apart? Where will the parents meet to exchange the child?
- Medical care – Will the child receive vaccinations? Who will get medical insurance for the child? Are the parents going to arrange for orthodontics?
- Religion – Is the child going to be raised in the practice of religion? Is each parent going to choose whether to practice any particular religion with the child?
- Communication with the other parent during parenting time – Will the child communicate with the other parent during parenting time? How will they communicate? Will they have a set schedule to call the other parent? Does the parent exercising parenting time have to facilitate communication by providing a cell phone or an internet connection?
- Restrictions on third parties during parenting time – When can a parent introduce a new romantic interest to the child? Can non-related adults spend the night during the parent’s parenting time? Are there any third parties who should not have contact with the child?
- Childcare – Does the child have child care needs? How will the parents meet this need? If a parent is unable to care for the child for a period of time, like three hours or more, does the parent have to offer to the other parent to provide child care before using a third party to provide care?
- Communication between parents – How will the parents talk about child custody issues? Will they communicate by email, phone or text? How often will the parents communicate and how will they handle emergency exceptions?
- Education – Where will the child attend school? Who will decide where the child attends school as the child gets older?
- Extracurricular activities – Who will decide what activities the child participates in? If one parent signs the child up for an extracurricular activity, does the other parent have to contribute financially? If one parent signs the child up for an extracurricular activity, does the other parent have to take the child during their parenting time?
- Child support – Child support is based on a formula in the State of Nevada and must be included in all custodial parenting plans.
Not every issue listed here needs to be in every plan. Of course, things like parenting time, transportation, and child support need to be in every parenting plan. However, other things may not be relevant or important in your case.
Should I Make a Parenting Plan or Go to Trial?
One of the great benefits of reaching a parenting plan agreement is that you have the flexibility to make your plan as open-ended or as detailed as you like. You can address very specific things that are important to you. If you take your case to trial, the judge isn’t likely to create very specific terms. You’re going to get something more generic than you can get if you work towards a parenting plan.
But there are some circumstances where a parenting plan isn’t going to work. In cases of domestic violence or in cases where the other parent just isn’t willing to negotiate fair terms based on Nevada law, it may be in the best interests of the child to take the case to court. Your Nevada child custody attorney can help you decide if you should work on a parenting plan or prepare your case for court.
How Can a Nevada Attorney for Child Custody Help Me?
A Nevada attorney for child custody can help you create a parenting plan that protects you and your children. They can help you understand how the courts typically apply Nevada law. When you understand the likely outcome of the case, you can effectively negotiate a favorable parenting plan that addresses the most important issues and protects your rights.
Any custodial parenting plan is critical to your child’s welfare. When you need a parenting plan that’s beneficial to your child and practical for everyone involved, Half Price Lawyers can help. We can help you negotiate a parenting plan that protects your child and your best interests under Nevada law. There’s no cost to speak with a member of our team. Call us today for a free consultation.