How do I Make a Parenting Plan with my Ex?

Going through a divorce can be tricky, especially when you have children together. When dealing with custody issues, the state of Arizona requires that you and your ex spouse complete a parenting plan, which states the agreements that you and your ex reach about legal custody, the sharing of rights and privileges, and an schedule for parenting time. Here’s a rundown what’s required in a parenting plan.

The State of Arizona requires divorcing parents to submit a parenting plan that contains at least these items:

  • A schedule for visitation that includes the child’s regular routine and a schedule for holidays and the times when the child is not in school. The more detailed, the better, and this schedule must be in the child’s best interests.
  • A statement of the rights and responsibilities of each parent regarding the personal care of the child, which outlines who is responsible for making decisions about matters such as religious training, healthcare, and education. This can be either or both parents.
  • A conciliation plan, which includes a process in which disputes will be resolved, how proposed changes to the parenting plan will be handled, and how breaches of the plan will be resolved.
  • A procedure for periodic reviews of the plan by the parents. The plan will most likely need adjusting as your child gets older and his or her needs change.
  • A statement explaining that joint custody does not necessarily mean equal parenting time and that both parents understand this.
  • A statement that indicates the both of you have read, understand, and will abide by the notification requirements of Arizona laws pertaining to registered sex offenders. You are required to notify your ex if you know that a registered sex offender or any person who has been convicted of a violent or dangerous crime against children has had or could potentially have access to your child.

These are the basic elements of a parenting plan. Of course, you can and should go into more depth to ensure that your needs are communicated. While you will most likely need to compromise on some issues with your ex spouse, know what’s important to you ahead of time and make sure you stand your ground on those. An attorney can help you formulate a legally sound parenting plan and ensure that your rights are protected. If you’re going through divorce proceedings and are dealing with child custody issues, contact an attorney today.


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