Do We Need a Parenting Plan/Parenting Agreement?

Do we need a Parenting Plan/Agreement?

Our Francine Bristo deals with this very pertinent question.

Parenting plans are really helpful unless there has been domestic abuse or concerns about your child’s safety.  A regular pattern of contact and a united front on arrangements makes children and you feel more secure.  You may have different ideas about what’s best for your children and this can make agreeing a parenting plan daunting, we at New Leaf are here to help support you through this.

A parenting agreement is a plan detailing how the day to day parenting of the children will be handled by the parties.  The plan involves both parents and in some cases, includes grandparents or a guardian.  Where children are old enough and it is appropriate, they too can be involved in the process enabling them to also have their voice heard.  The plan should reflect what is in the best interest of the children.

Parenting plans are useful in helping identify important issues where there may be disagreement and requiring the parties to deals with these ahead of time without the emotion avoiding harmful conflict.  The process in itself is helpful because it requires the parties to clarify what is expected of them and what they can expect of the other parties.

Parenting plans are unique to deal with the specific needs of the children and can include the following:

  • The living arrangements, when and how much time is spent with the parties to the agreement
  • Meeting the financial needs of the children
  • If applicable any religious issues
  • The educational needs and arrangements
  • The health needs and arrangements
  • A plan for how any future disputes will be resolved

A parenting plan can be drawn up by the parties themselves but it can be helpful to have a lawyer assist you in the process or to review the plan once it has been agreed.  You may want to get advice as to the contents of a parenting plan and where you stand legally before embarking on discussion as to the contents with the other party.  Lawyers are removed from the emotion of the situation, can help with any areas where there is disagreement, have experience of what such documents should contain and can give an indication as to whether the proposed agreement is reasonable in the circumstances.

We especially recommend you seek legal advice where your relationship with the other parent is difficult, where you would prefer not to meet or where trust is an issue.  We are happy to support you with your parenting plan, please call us on 01788 555 042 so that we can talk through your options.

If you need to get in touch with us, contact us at the emails below:

Rugby office – francinebristo@newleafsolicitors.co.uk

Leicester office - markperrett@newleafsolicitors.co.uk

Towcester office - amyearis@newleafsolicitors.co.uk

Southampton office - kellybruton@newleafsolicitors.co.uk

Birmingham office - paulineorourke@newleafsolicitors.co.uk