Mother’s day is just around the corner. For children, it’s a good day to stop and appreciate the very special role Mother’s play in your life. For Mother’s, it should be a day filled with relaxing and spending quality time with your children. However, if you’re separated, it may be a difficult day to negotiate with your former partner.
To avoid any stress or confusion on the day, it’s a good idea to put in place a parenting plan with your former partner ahead of time. Here’s a few tips on how to ensure this Mother’s Day is an enjoyable one.
Whether this is your first Mother’s Day post-separation or you have been separated for a while, it can be a challenging day to face on your own. Naturally, as a mother, you want to spend this important day with your children. It’s important then to ensure that you and your former partner can agree on a parenting plan for the day that will work well for you both as well as for the children.
There are a number of parenting plan methods you can put in place for Mother’s Day, depending on what suits both parties. Some more common ones include:
- A time-sharing arrangement over Mother’s Day weekend: This allows both parties to enjoy part of the day or weekend with the children. For instance, one parent (more likely the Father) would have the children from 9:00am on the Saturday until 9:00am on Mother’s Day. Then 9:00am on Mother’s Day until 9:00am the next day would be spent with the other parent (more likely the Mother).
- Mother’s Day arrangement: This parenting plan allows the children and you to enjoy your special day with the children. The children spend Mother’s Day each year with you. You might agree to make it a weekend or just the day that the children spend with you on Mother’s Day.
A similar parenting arrangement can then apply for the children to spend time with their Father on Father’s Day. No matter what parenting plan you and your former partner decide upon, it’s a good idea to choose an arrangement that is less disruptive for the children and, if there is conflict between you and your former partner, one which involves as little interaction for you with your former partner as possible.
It is not a requirement for parenting arrangements that you have any legal agreement or court orders in place. It often really helps however, if you and your former partner at least have a parenting plan that sets out what you have agreed for parenting arrangements. This will help to ensure that you have both considered all factors.
If agreement cannot be reached or where there is conflict or domestic violence involved, a court order can give you certainty and limit or exclude occasions where you and your former partner would otherwise need to interact in relation to arrangements for the children.
A court order may be obtained by agreement with your former partner and in that case, you do not need to attend at Court.
If agreement cannot be reached for consent orders to be issued, you may need then to consider making an application to court seeking parenting orders. Depending upon your circumstances, you will likely need to attend or at least attempt a dispute resolution meeting with your former partner before any application is made to court.
You are welcome to contact us at LGM Family Law for advice specific to your circumstances. We can assist you in reaching a parenting plan or where necessary, obtaining court orders for arrangements for your children.
For more information on child custody, see here.