When it comes to shared custody plans, the devil is in the details. Choosing the right terms will set you up for success, while ignoring possible issues will lead to future conflict.
Many parents focus so much on the division of parenting time that they don’t think about other important parenting rights. For example, as a concerned father, you may be painfully aware that your co-parent starting to date again will mean danger for your children.
Unrelated males present the biggest risk of violence for minor children, and many dating mothers will eventually have their boyfriend babysit their kids. Asking for the right custody terms could protect your children from the serious threat of physical abuse.
You can ask for the kids when they aren’t with your co-parent
Typically, the parent who currently has physical custody or parenting time is the one in control of what the kids do. You can’t micromanage your ex’s actions during their parenting time. However, if they will not be present with the children, you could ask that they come back to stay with you.
Adding the first right of refusal to your custody order means that your co-parent needs to check with you before taking their kids to their parents’ house or leaving them with a babysitter during their parenting time.
You could potentially spend more time with your kids than you would otherwise get to while also protecting them from developing an attachment to someone who won’t be around someone or facing physical abuse from someone not in your family. Including the right terms in your custody order will help you protect your children.