If you are a divorced parent who wants to be allowed to spend more time with your children under a Florida parenting plan, here are a couple of things you shouldn’t do:
- Don’t send your ex-spouse a cake with a grenade on top.
- If you should be fortunate enough to win a court battle to spend more time with your children, don’t gloat about it on Twitter and call your ex-spouse a “chubby weirdo.”
Who would do this, you ask? Charlie Sheen in his recent custody battle.
Here are some tips to maximize your parenting time and not be like Charlie:
- Have a plan in place — Make sure you have a plan for your child’s living accommodations. If you are moving into a new home, have a bedroom set aside, know which school your child will attend, investigate after-school activities, and have childcare arrangements mapped out. The judge will ask you about your plans.
- Attend your child’s events — Show the judge that you are an active and involved parent by attending your child’s school and after-school activities, religious events and other social outings. Know the name of your child’s teachers and call them periodically to see how your child is doing in class.
- Comply with all legal obligations — if you are seeking to be the parent with the majority of parenting time, it’s important that you are current on all support obligations. Don’t agree to any informal support modifications without court approval. By complying with all court orders, you are showing the judge that you are a responsible person.
- Keep some distance between your child and the person you are dating — The judge will want to ensure that you are putting your child’s interests first, so don’t move in with a new partner while you’re seeking more parenting time. Spend substantial amounts of alone time with your child to give her or him your full attention.
Developing a parenting plan during a divorce or modification proceeding can be a complex and emotional process. Contact an experienced Pinellas County family law firm to learn more.