Divorce can compound differences in parenting beliefs, goals and ideals, making it difficult to get on the same parenting page. If you are a parent facing a divorce, surely you are concerned about how to manage custody negotiations.

Even if you’re an active dad involved in caretaking and addressing the emotional needs of your children, you may be concerned that you won’t get equal custody of your kids. Georgia family law stipulates that both parents are equal when it comes to child custody arrangements. Georgia family courts evaluate each case individually and base child custody decisions on the best interests of the children.

Parenting plans in Georgia

In domestic relations cases, some dads fear being left out of parental decision-making. Georgia requires parents to submit a parenting plan to the court. Parents work together to decide on the terms of child custody, which leaves room for the voices and opinions of both parents.

The following are basic elements of a Georgia parenting plan:

  1. Parenting time. The plan should be specific about where each parent will spend time with the children and establish the days of the week the kids will be with each parent. If supervision is needed during parenting time, the details of such should be included.
  2. Holiday and vacation time. You will need to address where your children will spend birthdays, significant holidays, family events and vacations. Some parents choose to alternate holidays to ensure fairness for both parents and children.
  3. Transportation. Both parents will have to agree on transportation agreements that include details about how the children will travel between homes, along with drop-off and pick-up locations.
  4. Information sharing. Parents have the legal right to access their s records and information, including education, health, extracurricular activities and religious communications.
  5. Communication. Maintaining clear communication is vital for the children’s sake. Establish the best means of communication, whether that be emails, text messages or phone call and when communication is permissible.

The most important element of any parenting plan is that it reflects the needs and interests of the children.

Many divorced dads find co-parenting to be a challenge. However, with shared common ground, empathy, patience and open communication, you can help create a parenting plan that establishes structure, agreements and commitments. This can help contribute to a predictable and consistent schedule for your kids.