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Make sure you understand what's included in a parenting agreement

The parenting agreement is the backbone of the parenting relationship you will have after your divorce. It includes important information about the child's visitation schedule and other facets of the child's life. Even if you aren't too familiar with the parenting agreement, you will need to get one in place so that you can get the divorce over with and move on to your new life.

When you and your ex opt for a divorce, you will have the opportunity to work out the terms of the parenting agreement together. If you can do this, you will have more control over what the agreement entails. If you end up having to go through a trial, the court will decide the terms of the parenting plan.

As you think about what you will have to decide in this plan, you need to consider the normal custody points like when you will have the children and when your ex will have them. You also have to make plans for when the days don't follow the normal schedule.

Taking the time to make a holiday schedule and plans for when school is out can help you in the future. These days pose unique issues, especially for parents of young children. When school isn't in session, you might have to pay for a sitter. This might mean you need to plan financially, but it also means that you need to find someone you trust who can handle the task.

You also have to plan for who is going to pay for what expenses. The big expenses include medical care, school costs and extracurricular activities. While you are on this topic, discuss how any reimbursements will be made if those become necessary.

It is also possible to outline how time will spent with other family members. This could include time that the children can spend with their grandparents and other people they are close to.

Your parenting agreement has to be personalized to fit your child's needs. Keeping their interests in mind might help you to come up with an agreement with your ex.

Source: FindLaw, "The Parenting Agreement," accessed Dec. 01, 2017

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