Children are often caught in the middle of divorce proceedings, causing more significant amounts of stress to the divorcing parties. When parents get divorced, parents are often concerned that the divorce will disrupt their children’s lives. To alleviate the burden of the impending divorce, parents must create a parenting plan. Within a parenting plan, topics like the allocation of parental responsibilities and parenting time guidelines are set so that once the divorce is finalized, the children’s lives will be as stable as possible.
Parenting plans are essential in ensuring that each parent will play a role in their children’s lives. However, what happens when one parent is supposed to watch the children but, for whatever reason, is unable? Parenting plans may prepare for this scenario through a “right of first refusal.” If you are getting divorced and have children, consult with an experienced divorce attorney who is well-versed in the creation of parenting plans so you can have the peace of mind that once your divorce is official, your children’s life will go on with the guidance and support of both parents.
Defining the “Right of First Refusal”
Through the right of first refusal, if a parent cannot watch the children, they must contact the other parent before contacting a babysitter, friend, or relative to watch them. At the core of the right of first refusal is the belief that the most beneficial environment for children to grow up in is with their parents.
Within the parenting plan, parents can decide upon a minimum time when the parents have the right of first refusal. For example, suppose parents included a provision for the right of first refusal in their parenting plan. In that case, if the father is slated to go on a three-day vacation during a week where he has custody of the children, the father must first ask the mother to watch the children before contacting a babysitter or friend to watch the children.
Parents should include details about how and when the right of first refusal will apply to their co-parenting arrangement. For example, does an absence of a few hours trigger the right of first refusal? What about an absence of a day or longer? How will the children be transported between the parents’ homes? Make sure you address important matters like these when developing your parenting plan so there is no confusion in the future.
Contact a DuPage County Parenting Plan Attorney
Parents want the best for their children. If you are getting divorced and are concerned about the well-being of your child or children, contact the esteemed Wheaton, IL, parenting plan lawyers with The Stogsdill Law Firm, P.C.. Call 630-462-9500 today for a comprehensive consultation.