This is the first summer of your divorce. The kids are out of school, and you would love to take them on a road trip. You know it is bound to be different than when you were married, but you are excited to get away for a while and make some memories.
This can get complicated. Use these five tips to help:
- Plan in advance. Never put if off. Honestly, plan too far in advance. Talk to your ex and make sure the trip can happen before you start paying for anything.
- Consider your custody agreement. Does your scheduling have any flexibility? What are you obligated to tell your ex? Do you need his or her permission before taking the kids out of state?
- Create an exact schedule. You share custody of your children, so this is not time to act impulsively. Plan a schedule and stick to it. Make sure your ex knows when you plan to pick the kids up, where you're going and when you expect to return. Communication is critical.
- Consider all documentation needed if you cross any borders. Do the children need passports? Do you need written permission from your ex?
- Always put the children first. This should be your main goal with every decision you and your ex make. It applies to trips, as well. Consider what they want, how this impacts their lives and what decisions are best for them.
Do you have any questions about your child custody rights? Make sure you know exactly what steps you need to take before you head off on your summer trip.