Parenting is one of the most rewarding experiences a person can have, but it also brings its fair share of challenges. One of those challenges is figuring out how to balance parenting time when you’re in a custody arrangement. In this article, we’ll explore some tips on how to increase or change your parenting schedule so that you can make the most of the time you have with your children.
Definition of Parenting Time
Parenting time is the amount of time that a parent spends with their child. This can be physical time, such as when the child is living with the parent, or it can be quality time, such as when the parent is spending time with the child doing activities together. Parenting time can also be divided into joint custody, where both parents have equal parenting time, and sole custody, where one parent has primary custody of the child.
Reasons to Change Your Schedule
If you’re a parent who feels like you’re never seeing your kids, you may be considering changing your schedule. Here are a few reasons why this could be a good idea:
- You’re never home when they are. If you work long hours or have a long commute, it can be tough to find time to spend with your children. Changing your schedule may help you to be home more when they are.
- You’re always tired. If you’re working long hours, you may not have enough energy to spend quality time with your kids when you do see them. A change in schedule could help you to get more rest and be more present when you are with your children.
- You miss important events. If you’re working all the time, you may miss out on important milestones in your child’s life, such as their first steps or words. Changing your schedule can help you to be there for these special moments.
- Your children are acting out. If your children are misbehaving, it could be because they feel like they aren’t getting enough attention from you. Spending more time with them can help them to feel loved and secure, and may improve their behavior.
- You want to spend more time together as a family. If you feel like your family is never able to spend quality time together, changing your schedule can help make that happen. Family dinners, game nights, and other activities can help.
How many factors does the court evaluate when making a parenting time decision?
The court will take into account the following factors when making a parenting time decision:
- The child’s age and developmental stage.
- The child’s physical and emotional needs.
- The child’s relationship with each parent.
- The parents’ work schedules and availability.
- The parents’ ability to cooperate and communicate with each other.
- The distance between the parents’ homes.
- The parents’ respective abilities to provide for the child’s physical, emotional, and
- The stability of each parent’s home environment.
- The child’s preference (if the court deems him or her to be of sufficient age and maturity).
- The parents’ history of involvement in the child’s life, school activities, and extracurricular activities.
- Any history of domestic violence or abuse by either parent against the other parent or the child.
Legal Process for Changing Your Schedule
If you would like to change your parenting time schedule, you will need to file a motion with the court. In the motion, you will need to explain why you are requesting the change and how it will benefit the child. The other parent will be given an opportunity to respond to the motion, and the judge will make a decision based on what is in the best interest of the child.
Steps to Take to Increase or Change Your Parenting Time
If you are a parent who would like to increase or change your parenting time, there are a few steps you can take to make this happen. First, you will need to speak with the other parent about your wishes and see if they are open to making changes. If both parents are in agreement, then you can work together to come up with a new parenting time schedule that works better for everyone involved. However, if the other parent is not willing to make changes, then you may need to go through the court system in order to have a judge rule on the matter.
If you are hoping to increase your parenting time, one option is to request more weekends or longer visits during holidays and breaks from school. You could also ask for additional weekday evening visits if that works better for your schedule. If you have been paying child support and would like to receive some financial assistance from the other parent, then you can also request an increase in parenting time as part of those negotiations.
If you are wanting to change your parenting time schedule due to a change in your work schedule or another important commitment, be sure to communicate this clearly with the other parent. They may be open to making some adjustments in order for you to still have quality time with your child. Ultimately, it is important that both parents discuss any proposed changes and come up with a plan that is in the best interests of the child before making any decisions.
Strategies For Making the Most Of Your Increased or Changed Parenting Time
- Quality Time: When you do have time with your kids, make it quality time. Put away the electronics and really focus on them. Listen to what they have to say, play games with them, and just enjoy their company.
- Flexibility: Be flexible with your parenting time. If your work schedule changes or something else comes up, be willing to adjust your parenting time accordingly. Your kids will appreciate the flexibility and it will make it easier to work around everyone’s schedules.
- Communication: Communicate with the other parent about your parenting schedule. If you need to make changes, talk to them about it ahead of time so that there are no surprises. Good communication is key to a successful co-parenting relationship.
- Prioritize: Prioritize your time with your kids. Make sure that they are a priority in your life and that you make time for them every chance you get.
- Routines: Set up routines for yourself and your kids when it comes to parenting time. Having a set schedule will help everyone know what to expect and when they can expect it. This can help reduce stress for both you and your kids
Resources for Parents Needing Support and Guidance
Parenting is a difficult task that requires a lot of time, energy, and patience. Unfortunately, there are times when parents need help and guidance. If you are a parent who is needing support and guidance, there are many resources available to you.
There are plenty of books available on parenting. These books can offer tips on everything from dealing with tantrums to potty training. Reading about different parenting styles can also be helpful in finding the approach that works best for you and your family.
There are also many online resources available. Parenting websites often have articles with advice from experts, as well as forums where parents can share their experiences and offer support to one another. Social media platforms like Facebook also have groups dedicated to parenting, which can be a great way to connect with other parents and get advice.
If you feel like you need more personalised help, there are also many professionals who offer counselling and support specifically for parents. This can be an incredibly valuable resource, particularly if you are struggling with a specific issue such as postnatal depression or anxiety.
How to Change Parenting Time in Different States?
There is no one-size-fits-all answer to the question of how to change parenting time in different states. Each state has its own laws and procedures governing the modification of parenting time schedules. Before taking any action, it is important to consult with an experienced family law attorney in your state to learn about the specific process that must be followed and to ensure that you are taking the appropriate steps to protect your rights and interests.
In general, to modify a parenting time schedule in most states, you will need to show that there has been a substantial and material change in circumstances since the last order was entered. Depending on the state, this may include changes such as relocating out of state, significant changes in employment that affect one parent’s ability to exercise parenting time, or changes in the child’s age or needs. After identifying the relevant changes, you must file paperwork with the court requesting a modification of parenting time. The court may then conduct a hearing on the matter and make an order accordingly.
Parenting time is an important part of raising children and having a successful relationship with them. It can be challenging to figure out the right balance between work, home, and family life while still making sure your kids get enough quality time with each parent. However, it is possible to create a flexible parenting schedule that works for everyone involved. With some thoughtful planning and communication between both parents, you can set up a parenting routine that will help ensure you all have plenty of fun-filled and meaningful moments together as a family.