Parenting Plan

In Utah, a parent-time plan is an essential agreement that is finalized through what’s called a parenting plan, which helps guarantee a structured schedule where the non-custodial parent can see their child on a regular basis.

What Is a Parenting Plan?

When two parents decide to get a divorce, they will have to discuss how they want to move forward with their children. Usually, one parent will have primary custody while the other will receive parent-time, which refers to the time that they will spend with their children. Both parents must agree on the parent-time schedule, which may be in a courtroom or a mediation environment during the divorce finalization.

But to enforce parent-time, there must first be a parenting plan. Parenting plans are a formal and legal agreement on how to raise their children that must be agreed upon by both parties. This document exists to diminish any confusion or potential disagreements between the parents during their children’s upbringing.

What Do You Have to Include in a Parenting Plan?

While parenting plans are an official document that both parents will rely on for years to come, Utah parenting plans have to meet specific criteria. Some of the state-mandated requirements include answering these questions:

  • How will you both resolve disagreements on decisions for your children? Will it be through counseling, mediation, or arbitration?
  • Where will your children sleep specific days, including birthdays and holidays?
  • Which parent, if not both, will make decisions about the children’s education, religion, and healthcare decisions during upbringing?

Note: There are two exceptions to this agreement: (1) Each parent will make the daily decisions while the child is living with them, and (2) Either parent can make emergency decisions for the child’s health or safety

  • If one parent wants to relocate, how will this change the parent-time plan? Who will pay for the travel expenses? How much notice will you require before relocation?

Besides these required discussion points, you are both free to add whatever else you’d like to the parenting plan. Some good ideas to cover might include:

  • Types and times of extra-curricular activities
  • Extended family time
  • Language and culture
  • Travel requirements, such as who will pay certain expenses
  • The primary form of communication between parents, like texting or calling
  • Safety requirements
  • Lifestyle and discipline expectations
  • Computer usage
  • Diet and nutrition
  • Pets, like whose house at which they will stay

Unfortunately, not everyone abides by their parent-time plan. That’s why it’s crucial to work with a well-versed attorney who can help ensure that you have an elaborate outline before finalizing it as your family’s official parent-time guidelines.

Contact Schmidt Law Firm Today

Parenting plans are supposed to bring peace of mind to divorced couples while they raise their children—but agreeing upon specific details and enforcing these regulations can be a whole other challenge.

If you’re writing a parenting plan or your ex-spouse is not adhering to the agreed-upon guidelines, then Schmidt Law Firm can help you today. With decades of practice in family law, there is no case too little or too big for Stacey Schmidt and her team of experienced attorneys. Contact Schmidt Law today for a 30-minute legal consultation.

Checklist for Parenting Plan –

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Parenting Plan –

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Pointers for Parents and Parenting Plans –

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