Formerly referred to as child custody arrangements, time-sharing arrangements detail the amount of time a minor child spends with each parent following a divorce. There are many different ways a time-sharing arrangement can be structured, and there is no single “right way” to approach such a sensitive topic. Time-sharing arrangements should take into consideration the age of the children, the needs of the children, and the goals of the family.
Florida’s policy is that children should have a relationship with each parent, and unless there’s abuse or certain other factors, this is generally a good rule of thumb. A time-sharing schedule that reflects this policy makes sense for most families. A time-sharing schedule designed to punish one parent also punishes the children in the end, which is why it’s best to avoid this whenever possible.
Time-Sharing Arrangements to Consider
Traditional time-sharing arrangements often involved one parent having custody of the children during the week, with the other parent having custody every other weekend and perhaps one evening during the week. Times have changed and both parents are often involved in raising their children. Here are a few scenarios that allow for more equal time-sharing.
- Bird Nesting – Bird nesting is a term that refers to an arrangement wherein the child remains in a single home and parents alternate living in the home with the child. This way, the child only lives in one environment, which provides continuity. This arrangement works best with parents who are on good terms. It is not for everyone – or even most divorcing couples.
- Split Weeks –Another approach is for one parent to have the child starting Wednesday at 3:00 pm until Saturday at 3:00 pm. Then the other parent takes custody of the child from 3:00 pm on Saturday until 3:00 pm on Wednesday.
- 5-2-2-5 –Another way to split parenting time equally, but without breaking up the weekends, is the 5-2-2-5 approach. In this rotation, each parent has the children for two days during the week, along with every other weekend. So, for example, Parent 1 has the children Wednesday, Thursday, Friday, Saturday, Sunday (5) the first week. Then Parent 2 has the children Monday, Tuesday (2). Next, Parent 1 has the children Wednesday, Thursday (2) and Parent 2 has the children Friday, Saturday, Sunday, Monday, Tuesday (5).
Need a Time-Sharing Plan?
If you are divorcing with minor children, a time-sharing plan is an essential part of the process. Contact family law attorney Eric C. Cheshire, P.A. to discuss your unique situation. With 30 years of family law experience to draw from, he can work with you to develop a time-sharing plan that’ll work best for you and your family. Every family situation is unique and finding the right time-sharing arrangement is important to the well being of your children. Call (561) 655-8844 to schedule a confidential consultation today.