When you get a divorce as a parent, one of the most important things to do is establish time with your children. Part of getting a divorce is the creation of a parenting plan. A time-sharing agreement is part of a parenting plan, which is a schedule that you and your former spouse agree on times you share different events within your custody time. A time-sharing agreement, as well as your entire parenting plan, is fluid and can change as your children's circumstances change. The following are some times when your time-sharing agreement may become altered:
Any time there is a change in a schedule, you need to revisit your time-sharing agreement to ensure the changes align with everyone's schedules. This can happen if anyone gets a new job or a change in shift. This can also happen as your children grow and become more involved in extra-curricular activities. Schedules can drastically change if one of you decides to move away. In this instance, you would need an overhaul of your time-sharing agreement that includes time for travel and extended visits.
You may also notice a need for change when your children become more social and spend more time with friends. If you are unable to pick up or drop off your child because he or she has a social outing, you may have to make arrangements with your former spouse to change your time-sharing agreement, particularly if you do not get to spend time with your child due to the changes.
Your Children's Basic Needs Are Not Met
If one of you becomes unable to meet the basic needs necessary to care for your children, changes will have to be made to your time-sharing arrangement. This can happen if one of you becomes sick or disabled and are physically unable to meet the needs of your children. This can also become necessary if one of you becomes addicted to substances that alter your mental state. If one of you suffers from a debilitating mental illness, changes will likely be necessary if the children's needs are not provided. This may be a difficult time, but the judge in your case will evaluate the needs of the children and the abilities of each parent before making a decision on your custody arrangement. If either of you make changes in your life or regain the ability to care for the children, you can request a modification in your time-sharing agreement that allows you to have custody again.
Learn more about time-sharing agreements by contacting a family law firm in your area.