When school is out, parents often take their children on vacation. Whether it is a week-long vacation or a shorter jaunt, the goal is to have fun and make memories with the kids. When you and your child’s other parent are no longer together, it can be difficult to make these plans.
One of the most important things that you can do is to start making your vacation plans early. This gives you time to sort out any issues that might arise with the timing or the arrangements.
Look at dates and times
You should typically start your vacation planning with a calendar and a copy of your child custody agreement. You should compare the dates and times in the agreement with the dates you are considering for vacation. Try to make your travel plans around child exchange times so that you aren’t stressed out trying to make it to the airport or leave close to the time you will pick your child up. You may also want to make sure that you leave yourself plenty of time to get the child back to the other parent when you return.
There are some instances in which vacations will take precedence over regular child custody agreement schedules. If this is noted in your custody agreement, make sure that you notify your ex of the dates and times of your travel as early as possible so that he or she doesn’t make plans at that same time.
Check the location
Some child custody orders have geographical restrictions about where you can take the children. You might have to get the court’s or your ex’s permission to take the child out of state. When child custody agreements include these restrictions, they are usually based on a county, state or specific-mile radius from the parent’s home.
Share your plans
Even if your vacation dates are covered in the child custody agreement, you generally should share your plans with your ex. This might not be included in the requirements, but it is a common courtesy that can go a long way in ensuring you maintain a civil relationship with your ex.
You might be required to share the travel plans. If this is a case, you should provide an itinerary with the basic details. This will help your ex to know where you are going in case something does happen.