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Here's why it's important to create a temporary parenting plan

In Florida, a parenting plan will be required to be filed with your divorce decree. But what happens to the custody of the kids while the divorce is pending?

That's where a temporary parenting plan comes in. It settles where your child will live and how you and your ex will parent during the divorce. The temporary plan remains in place during the course of the divorce, and that can be as long as six months.

The temporary parenting plan is very similar to the permanent plan, and it likely could roll over into a permanent plan. That's why it's so important to take it seriously and think hard about the document you are about to create.

It should include:

  • Whether parents will share joint legal custody or if just one parents will have legal custody.
  • Where the children will live and how much time children will spend with each parent, and when.
  • How the parents will divide expenses for the children. If you want temporary child support, you'll have to file paperwork for that.

Your temporary plan also should outline your child's daily schedule and include which parents will have the children for specific holidays, as well as a vacation schedule and a visitation schedule. Remember that your wishes come second to meeting the social, physical and emotional needs of your children.

As long as you and your co-parent are on good terms, you can work on the temporary parenting plan together and file it with the court. A judge typically will approve a fair plan that has been well-considered.

You and your child's other parent can work together to make a temporary custody plan to file with the court. If you agree on the plan, the judge will usually approve it.

If you and your child's other parent do not agree on the temporary plan, you will need to file for a temporary custody order and attend a temporary custody hearing. The judge at the hearing will determine the temporary plan.

Nothing is more important than the care of your children, and a parenting plan is a good start. Your divorce attorney can assist you with the creation of the plan.

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