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Parenting Plan

Forming a Parenting Plan

"A good parenting plan can help parents avoid a lot of headache regarding
how their children are being raised."

- Karen Estry, Esq.

Creating a Parenting Plan

When children are involved, a couple will be required to create a Parenting Plan before filing for divorce or before separation begins.

A Parenting Plan outlines all the details about how a child, or children, will be cared for, and will include:

  • A timesharing schedule and a holiday schedule,
  • Info on how the parents are to communicate with each other,
  • Details on the child's extracurricular activities, including which parent will pay the costs associated,
  • Details on which parent or parents will make medical decisions, who will pay, and which parent's insurance is to be used.
Understanding the Law

As of 2008, Florida law requires parents to develop a parenting plan, and so fully outline how a child will be cared for, including when a child will spend time with each parent, where the child will reside, and how parental decision-making and responsibility will be shared.

Once parents have agreed to a parenting plan, it gets filed with the court and becomes enforceable by law. If a parent were to violate the parenting agreement, he or she could face civil penalties.

Meeting with a Lawyer

Before meeting with a lawyer for help creating a parenting plan, it may be helpful to gather the following documents, if available, and bring them to the meeting:

  • Any court documents you may have received thus far concerning your divorce proceedings,
  • Correspondence from your spouse or your spouse's attorney,
  • Any documents reflecting a previously-agreed to arrangement regarding parenting roles and responsibilities.