Child Custody

Child Custody During the Holidays

With Halloween and other major holidays right around the corner, the holiday season is quickly approaching. For many, the holidays are a time to relax and be with loved ones. If you are getting a divorce or thinking about getting a divorce, it is important to take the time to design a holiday custody arrangement that works best for you and your family. Creating a plan for where your children will spend the holidays will help to avoid stress and keep the focus on enjoying your time together.

What to Consider When Finalizing Your Child Custody Agreement?

As a parent, you must create a child custody agreement before your divorce can be finalized. The agreement should be specific and detailed as to when each parent will have custody of the children. This process can be time-consuming and take a lot of compromise; however, it is important to find a solution that allows both parents to spend time with their children during the holidays.

Some things to consider when deciding holiday child custody arrangements include:

  • Distance between the parents
  • Travel time
  • Children’s age
  • School schedules, and
  • Holiday traditions

If you and your ex-spouse get along together, you may also consider “sharing” certain holidays. You can agree to spend time together on the holiday with your children rather than giving up the holiday altogether. This may be very beneficial if you have young children.

What Holiday Custody Arrangement Options are There?

There are several ways to formulate your custody arrangement but ultimately it is important to choose the one that works best for you and your family. Here are some examples that are commonly implemented in California.

Alternating Years. Parents can agree to have custody of the kids for different holidays. The holidays when each parent has custody rotates each year. For example, Parent A has custody on Thanksgiving in “odd” years and Parent B has custody on Thanksgiving in “even” years.

Division of Christmas and Christmas eve. For most families, these two days in December are very special. Parents can agree to divide Christmas Day and Christmas Eve. For example, Parent A can have custody on Christmas Eve and Parent B can have custody on Christmas Day.

Traveling for Winter or Spring Break. If parents live in separate states, they can agree to spend time with their kids on different breaks altogether. It can be expensive and complicated to travel often, and it could lead to children feeling like they are “missing out” on things.

How Does a Timeshare Custody Arrangement Affect Holidays?

Timeshare custody is the amount of time each parent can spend time with physical custody of their child. It is important to know your timeshare custody percentage because it can affect how frequently you are permitted to have custody of your child. If you receive custody of your children during the holidays, you may be required to give up custody at other times of the year to avoid exceeding your timeshare custody percentage. Anticipating this limitation when making your holiday custody arrangement will help to organize and prioritize the holidays spent with your children.

Our compassionate legal team at Family Law San Diego is dedicated to helping families navigate through complicated and difficult changes. If you are worried about having custody of your children during this holiday season do not hesitate to contact us today at (619) 448-6500.