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Parenting agreements after divorce

When parents in Georgia divorce or stop living together, they will have to make decisions about who will take responsibility for their children. In previous generations, these matters were referred to as custody and visitation rights, but in recent years, these arrangements have also come to be known as parenting agreements.

New understandings of child psychology have challenged the standard notions of what a child custody agreement should look like. Evidence shows that children generally benefit from sustained relationships with both parents. In many cases, parents are urged to work together to develop a flexible schedule of time with their children. Even in cases where one parent has primary custody, the noncustodial parent may still want to spend a significant amount of time with his or her child.

Every parenting plan or agreement is different but may address issues such as where a child lives during the school year, with which parent a child will spend important holidays and, in cases where parents do not share custody 50-50, how often a child may visit the other parent.

Parenting agreements can become incredibly detailed. For example, parents may negotiate the question of who can take a child to see a doctor for non-emergency concerns. Issues of religion, school choice and tuition payments may also be part of the agreement. In situations where parents are having difficulty negotiating these issues, a neutral mediator may get involved.

Individuals who are considering divorce or separation and are concerned about parenting arrangements may benefit from speaking with an experienced family law attorney. The lawyer may be able to review the client's circumstances and make recommendations regarding a parenting plan that benefits everyone involved.

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