Creating a shared custody holiday schedule for the first time can be challenging in more ways than one. Time-sharing, as it’s referred to in the state of Florida, can be tough on recently divorced parents. Most parents will dread setting a holiday visitation schedule, especially when they’re used to being with their children full-time. When emotions are running high, it can be difficult to compromise or be willing to sacrifice quality time. This is especially true around this time of year. However, Florida family courts always promote a time-sharing visitation schedule that works for both parents. Agreed upon holiday schedules can help the entire family to relax and enjoy their time together. In order to make the arrangement as smooth as possible, we’ve created a list of holiday visitation options. Here are a few different ways you can create a holiday visitation schedule that works for the whole family.
Many divorced parents will choose to celebrate the holiday on two separate days. For instance, Christmas can be celebrated on December 25th, but also on the 23rd. This can help each parent to feel as though they’re not missing a holiday or having to wait until next year. In addition, kids are often excited to have the opportunity to celebrate with both parents. This type of holiday visitation schedule can be very simple, especially if one parent is okay with not celebrating on the actual holiday. They have an opportunity to make another day during the holiday season unique for the children.
Taking turns each year is a very common approach to a holiday visitation schedule. Every year, the children stay with one parent for the holidays. This can be a great option for parents who live in different cities and find sharing holiday time inconvenient. Instead of driving back and forth and splitting daytime schedules, the children stay with one parent throughout the holiday season. This allows each parent to be able to experience the holidays with the children in its entirety. This is especially helpful if one parent likes to travel or have individual time every other year.
A lot of parents will choose to split the day in half and share the holiday. For instance, the children can spend the morning at one home, then celebrate in the afternoon with the other. While this works very well with many families, this kind of holiday visitation schedule requires a lot of planning and compromise. Setting times for pick-ups need to be specific and each parent needs to be committed to being on time. It’s a great way for each parent to be able to celebrate the holiday with their children. Unfortunately, jumping from one home to another on the same day can sometimes be exhausting for the children. It’s important to always check-in to see if this kind of holiday visitation schedule works for them as well as you and your ex.
Designate a Certain Holiday
For some people, certain holidays are more important to them than others. In instances like these, setting a fixed holiday visitation schedule can be very appealing. For example, some people enjoy Thanksgiving more than Christmas. They like to cook and serve a big traditional meal for their family and friends. This is a perfect scenario to claim Thanksgivings and allow your ex to enjoy Christmas or Hanukkah with the kids. Remember that these don’t have to be permanent decisions. You can try a holiday visitation schedule like this for a year or two, then make changes as you and your ex see fit.
Take Special Days into Consideration
It’s always important to remember any other special occasions that take place during the holidays. A child’s birthday, a school play, a holiday carnival or any other event that is important to your child needs to be considered. Around this time of year, there are always holiday celebrations that might not be on your calendar but are certainly special to your child. Remember to check school calendars and incorporate these days into the shared holiday visitation schedule. Knowing about these special days can help you be prepared and prevent conflict. You always want to avoid any surprises in the schedule around this time of year.
More Information on Setting a Holiday Visitation Schedule
If you need any further information on what to include in your holiday visitation schedule, don’t hesitate to contact your family lawyer. Family law attorneys know that these arrangements can be difficult for those who have recently gone through a divorce. Family law attorneys can offer advice on how to handle a difficult custody situation or point you to other resources in the community. Reach out to a family law firm today to assure a smooth and relaxing holiday schedule for you and your children.
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