Shared Custody in Orlando: Creating a Fun and Balanced Summer Schedule

Florida courts recognize the value of allowing children to build meaningful relationships with both of their parents, which is why shared custody arrangements are the preferred option. When summer arrives and school’s out, what can you and your child’s other parent do to create a fun and balanced shared custody arrangement? 

The Orlando family law team at Bernal-Mora & Nickolaou, P.A., wants to help you find fun and balance this summer with a shared custody schedule that addresses your entire family’s needs and concerns. Here are some suggestions to help you get started.

What Is a Shared Custody Schedule? 

Florida recently implemented the Shared Parenting Act, which established a rebuttable presumption of equal time-sharing between parents as the default and in the child’s best interest. It also requires the courts to maximize time sharing between parents unless it harms the child’s well-being. The law promotes equal parental rights and facilitates joint responsibility between parents to ensure a child’s health, safety, and overall well-being. 

During a divorce, the court typically outlines a parenting plan that lists the essential responsibilities of each parent and establishes a time-sharing schedule for the child. Physical and legal custody measures, information sharing, and communication between parents are also addressed during the process. 

While most shared custody schedules address each parent’s unique schedule, responsibilities, and concerns, sometimes summer break can pose unique challenges, especially when both parents work. 

Tips for Creating a Fun and Balanced Summer Schedule 

First and foremost, the key to creating a fun and balanced summer schedule for your family is communication. You need to touch base with your child’s other parent early and often about summer expectations, vacations, and the potential for schedule adjustments. Miscommunication or a lack of communication can ruin your summer plans before they get off the ground:

  • Review Your Personal Schedule Before summer arrives, you must get a handle on your schedule. Do you plan to work the entire summer? Do you have time off? Do you have personal or work-related travel commitments? Plan your calendar so you know what your summer looks like and whether you and your child’s other parent need to address schedule changes.
  • Make Travel Plans Early – If you plan on traveling with your child over the summer, make tentative travel plans early and communicate with your child’s other parent before purchasing tickets or finalizing your plans. Ensure everyone is on the same page and understands what is happening and when. This is especially vital if you and your child plan to travel out of state or internationally. 
  • Account for Summer Camps or Daycare Programs Get a sense of your child’s summer routine. Will they need daycare while both their parents are at work? Are they going to be enrolled in summer camps or other activities? Communicate with your co-parent and establish a summer schedule where everyone knows what to expect and when, including who’s responsible for drop-offs and pickups. 
  • Decide Whether Your Parenting Plan Needs Modifications Summer break can be a fun but challenging time for parents. Will either of your work schedules change? Are you no longer available on specific days? A skilled family law and child custody attorney can help you determine whether your summer plans require changes to your parenting plan.

Contact an Orlando Child Custody Lawyer for Help 

As you and your child look forward to summer break, remember to plan ahead for any schedule changes the season may bring. Discuss your situation with a knowledgeable Orlando child custody lawyer at Bernal-Mora & Nickolaou, P.A., and get help creating a summer parenting plan that meets everyone’s needs. Request a confidential legal consultation today.

About the Author
Andrew Nickolaou, Esq., B.C.S., is a founding partner at Bernal-Mora & Nickolaou, P.A. He practices almost exclusively in divorce, marital and family law. Andrew and his partner, Ophelia Bernal-Mora, Esq., B.C.S., joined forces in March 2016 to form the unique and boutique husband and wife family law team at Bernal-Mora & Nickolaou, P.A. Together, Andrew and Ophelia take a practical and team-based approach to all of their cases and clients to deliver the highest quality experience and representation.