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Franklin Divorce Attorney > Blog > Child Custody > Handling Extracurricular Activities in Parenting Plans

Handling Extracurricular Activities in Parenting Plans


Crafting an inclusive, dynamic, successful parenting plan during a separation or divorce might just be an art form. Everything about your life is changing, and your family is stepping into something new. It is understandable that the weight of all this change and the number of tasks you have to juggle as a divorcing parent could be all encompassing. Things may easily slip through the cracks. But the more effort and care you put into crafting your parenting plan, the fewer disagreements and miscommunications you can expect down the line.

Extracurricular activities are an excellent item to address in parenting plans. These activities are often formative to our children. However, they do take up a lot of time (whose time? Which parent? Do they both need to give up parenting time to drive to practice? Can they both attend recitals or games?) and often are expensive (how do we address that cost, anyway?)

It is clear that laying out the plan for extracurriculars can be a tricky task. This article aims to help parents and avoid future conflict as they take on the endeavor.

Set Expectations

Before crafting the parenting plan at all, it can be important for both parents and the children involved to openly discuss each parents’ expectations, and the child’s expectations as well.

Important factors to consider when crafting a plan for extracurricular activities include considering the time commitment involved, the costs of different activities and who will pay those costs, and the logistical back-and-forth requirements of an activity. By really understanding the baseline of what is required, your family can craft a plan that really works with the realities of your situation.

Flexibility is Key

A successful parenting plan will also work in flexibility. Extracurricular activities, in particular, are often subject to seasonal changes. Adjusting custody exchange times or switching custody days with your co-parent is something that, ideally, co-parents should strive to make possible. For example, maybe one parent lives close to their son’s hockey rink, and it just makes more sense for the child to stay with that parent on tournament weekends. On the other hand, that same child’s piano teacher lives near the other parent, and the child may benefit from staying with that parent immediately preceding an end-of-year recital. One parent being amenable to the requests of the other, or to the genuine needs of their child, will likely lead to further instances of working together and flexibility down the road. This give and take allows the child to be where they most need to be – regardless of technicalities of custody orders.

As you can see, the ability to co-parent with flexibility primarily benefits the children, even more than the adults.

Contact Fort, Holloway & Rogers

In nearly every marriage, there are an innumerable number of reasons why a marriage is meant to end. But in divorces involving child custody cases, there remains at least one very good reason for those divorcing spouses to remain on congenial terms. Crafting a solid parenting plan, and custody agreements in general, requires nuance, flexibility, and the ability to foresee issues that may rear their head down the road. An experienced Franklin child custody lawyer can utilize their expertise to help you navigate through the complexities of crafting a parenting plan. Contact our office today to speak with our esteemed team on the specifics of your own case.




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