The emergence of COVID has virtually upended the way we live — how we work, recreate, educate our kids, and interact with one another. For parents who are divorced, these challenging times may also necessitate a change in their co-parenting schedule, to better accommodate the specific needs and welfare of the child.
Tanya Freeman, family law and divorce attorney at the Weiner Law Group in Parsippany, NJ, understands the added challenges divorced parents with two separate households can face during these difficult times. And while original custody orders may remain in place, certain visitation adjustments may be necessary to help ensure the welfare of their children.
What COVID-related considerations can affect the parenting schedule?
- Is it in the child’s best interest keep the parenting plan that is in place, sending the child back and forth between homes?
- Is one parent better able to support a home schooling environment than the other?
- Does one parent have a job that involves more contact with the public and therefore more risk for household members?
- Who else lives in the home, and how much contact do they have with the public?
- Is a household member in a high-risk group?
- Does one home have more space or better access to safe outdoor spaces, where children can play and get exercise while keeping the recommended physical distance?
What is New Jersey law surrounding co-parenting?
A child custody arrangement is established to secure the well-being of the child. In New Jersey, as part of the divorce proceedings, a parenting-time agreement is part of the court-ordered custody arrangement. Even in this time of uncertainty, parents can be penalized for being in breach of their parenting time agreement.
That’s why it’s important for divorced or separated parents to explore whether the visitation agreement is still relevant and to talk about amendments to it in order to meet best interests of their child. Should there be trouble coming to an agreement, having the support of an experienced divorce attorney can help resolve these problems before disagreements turn to hostility.
Tanya Freeman and the dedicated family law attorneys at Weiner Law Group serve clients throughout New Jersey. Contact us to learn more about how we can help you serve the best interests of your family.