Navigating Co-Parenting During the Pandemic this Holiday Season

As the holiday season begins, you are most likely considering what your holiday visitation schedule will look like in accordance to your court-ordered agreement. Considering a co-parenting schedule around the holiday season is tough enough without a looming pandemic. The persistent existence of COVID-19 could bring about many problems for co-parents this year, such as one parent living in a COVID hotspot, children needing to travel to see a parent, or a parent exhibiting virus symptoms. With the many possible dilemmas that are present this year, the following tips are helpful to keep in mind.

Stay Informed

If you are co-parenting and living in Wisconsin, staying informed on the most up to date COVID-19 guidelines is crucial. The rapid spread of COVID-19 in Wisconsin recently resulted in Governor Evers issuing a new executive order, titled Executive Order #94. The order advises Wisconsin residents to stay home as much as possible, aside from the need to go to work, shop for groceries or refill a prescription.

The Centers for Disease Control and Prevention (CDC) also recently issued holiday season guidelines pertaining to COVID-19 via (in) a new blog.

Staying up to date on statewide and nationwide guidelines pertaining to virus safety will ensure you and your co-parent engage in the safest decisions possible on behalf of your children this holiday season. 

Keep Your Children’s Best Interest in Mind

To avoid fighting with your ex-spouse, make sure you are flexible to last minute changes of plans, and ensure you are communicating openly. Put yourself in your children’s position, and keep in mind that they do not want to be surrounded by conflict during one of the most exciting times of the year. Bracing yourself for traditions to look a bit different this year is important. Get togethers may need to take place virtually for the safety of all family members involved.

Be Prepared on How to Act if Issues Arise

If it appears your co-parent is ignoring expert guidelines pertaining to COVID and acting in a manner that threatens your children’s health, you should first aim to solve matters civilly. If a conversation does not result in a change in your ex-spouse’s behavior, try involving a third-party source as a voice of reason, such as a healthcare professional. In most cases, by this point, your co-parent will begin to behave appropriately.

However, in the rare and extreme instance your ex continues acting recklessly, discuss your situation with a lawyer to see if custody modification is necessary. The court will examine your situation and make a decision about a holiday visitation schedule with the best interest of the child in mind. If your situation comes to the extreme of modification consideration, having a seasoned family lawyer by your side increases the likelihood you will attain the outcome you desire.

Work with an Experienced Family Law Attorney

If you find yourself facing custody disputes this holiday season or are seeking guidance in any other family law matter, contact Sparr, Belville & Brown, LLC. We will offer honest advice guided by our extensive experience and advocate for you in order to achieve the results you and your family deserve. The experience we have in child custody cases and other areas of family law have earned us a respectable reputation across our community. Call our Oshkosh office at 920-335-1413 to schedule a meeting, or contact us online.