PARENTING ARRANGEMENTS IN PLACE FOR CHRISTMAS?
The Christmas period can be a stressful time for most families. What to serve? What gifts are needed? Where will we spend Christmas day?
Despite the mad rush, it all comes together in the end.
Whether you are a planner or a last-minute Christmas organiser, one thing you should really handle now is arrangements for the children over Christmas.
It is not uncommon in the months, and even days, leading up to Christmas for us to receive frantic calls from clients where the other parent has changed the arrangements for Christmas without consulting them.
Sometimes extended family members who haven’t been seen for years can give rise to a change of plan to the already agreed Christmas arrangements and the other party will not agree to alter the changeover time.
Other times, one party simply refuses to permit the other party to see his/her children for some reason that is not communicated.
Where parties have only recently separated, they may not have turned their minds to when the children will spend time with the other parent at Christmas.
The most important rule to remember when it comes to Christmas arrangements is your children’s interests are the priority, not the parents’ interests.
Children cherish memories of time with their parents, they do not hold on to memories of whether they spent one or two more hours with one parent.
Seeing both parents on Christmas Day or on separate days is often never remembered.
It is the memories of how you embrace the holiday period with your children that can last a lifetime.
If you do not have arrangements in place for the children for the Christmas period, we suggest you engage an experienced family law solicitor without delay to help you negotiate arrangements, arrange Family Dispute Resolution or prepare an application to the Court.