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FAMILY LAW ARTICLES

August 15, 2018
Joint custody and household rules

Many divorcing parents here in California pursue joint custody arrangements when it comes to their kids. Among the things divorcing couples may find attractive about such custody is that it can give both parents ample opportunity to maintain a strong relationship with the kids.

When a joint custody arrangement includes joint physical custody, the two parents will generally split time having their child live with them. There can be many important details to iron out when it comes to having a child split time living in two different households.

One is scheduling. Setting clear expectations regarding how time with the kids will be split could help head off potential future conflicts. So, how scheduling issues are addressed in a child custody agreement related to joint custody can be very important. Skilled attorneys can give divorcing individuals guidance on addressing scheduling and other important details in such agreements.

Also, as parents who are pursuing joint custody prepare for the various aspects of this new family arrangement, there are many things that it can be worth giving some thought to. This includes household rules.

Consistency can be helpful for kids who are dealing with the changes of a divorce. So, a divorcing parent may want to give careful thought to what household rules he or she will have once a custody arrangement takes effect to make sure the rules are fair and consistent.

Now, kids living in two different households means two sets of rules. Parents might want to have some initial discussions on this to see if they can agree on some basics on household rules to keep some level of consistency between the two sets.

Now, it is pretty natural for differences to develop between two co-parents’ household rules once the rubber hits the road. This can especially be the case when it comes to minor things. Kids can be pretty good at adjusting to such differences. So, understanding and tolerating the potential for minor differences to arise can be important for divorcing parents.

What if differences in household rules involve bigger issues, such as issues touching on a child’s safety? In such instances, a parent may want to bring up their concerns with the other parent to see if an agreement could be reached to bring the rules more in-synch. When having such discussions, it is important to keep things respectful, civil and focused on the kids.

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