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Child custody understanding may be needed during holidays

With the holiday season well underway, many individuals have likely planned their family gatherings. Though many California residents may make these plans with joy, planning for the holidays may seem more complicated for recently divorced parents. Because child custody agreements may still be fresh, parents may need to allow themselves some leeway in order to adjust. 

There are various steps that parents could take in attempts to make their holidays run more smoothly. First, parents may wish to become well acquainted with their custody agreements. By fully understanding what terms dictate with whom the children will spend certain holidays, planning may be easier. Additionally, knowing the agreement could help a parent ensure that the other parent involved is following the terms accordingly.

Because many holidays are split between divorced parents, pick up and drop off times will likely come into play. Parents may want to discuss this schedule in advance to better ensure that unexpected situations are kept to a minimum. Furthermore, parents may wish to honor the custody agreement further by not encroaching on the other parent's time with the children. 

It is understandable that divorced parents may have a hard time letting their kids go during the holidays. However, it is important to remember that child custody agreements are legally binding. Any efforts to undermine the agreement could have serious results. If California parents feel that their agreements are not being properly honored, they may wish to speak with their legal counsel in order to determine what steps they could take in order to ensure the agreement is enforced and/or how terms could be changed to better suit the circumstances.

Source:, "Ex-etiquette: First holiday after a breakup is rough", Jann Blackstone, Dec. 2, 2016

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