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Monroe NC Family Law Blog

Parenting provisions that address travel overseas

If your ex wants to take your children out of the country, you may be concerned about the safety of your children, and perhaps with good reason. The laws are different overseas, and people can find themselves in difficult situations when they travel.

To allay your concerns about your children traveling in a foreign country with the other parent, you may want to make sure you include some variation of the following parenting provisions in your child custody agreement:

  • Parents may use their parenting time to travel overseas with the child. Two weeks before the travel date, the parent must give a detailed itinerary that includes contact information and locations for every place where they will be staying. The parents will also share the necessary travel documentation with one another to allow the child to travel.
  • The parents agree to not file for a child's passport without first getting permission from the other parent, or getting permission from the appropriate court.
  • In case either parent is in possession of the passport belonging to the child, he or she will keep it in a safety deposit box under seal of court.

Japan and the Hague Convention

For many years, Japan was one of the hold-out countries that had yet to agree to the Hague Convention, a treaty that assists nations to resolve international child custody and child abduction cases. However, in 2014, Japan acceded to the Hague Convention as it relates to international child abduction.

Following Japan's ratification of the Hague Convention, however, the nation has faced scrutiny about its method of enforcing the treaty. Some say that Japan has not participated adequately to enforce Hague Convention rules in cases that involve Japanese parents bringing their children back to Japan in violation of foreign family law decrees.

These child support modification tips can be your guide

There could come a point when you are no longer able to afford your child support payments. You hope that this never happens, as you want to financially care for your child, but you don't know what the future will bring.

It's important that you clearly understand how to request a child support modification, as this will go a long way in putting you on track to lowering your payment and making it easier for you to get by financially.

How to share holidays in long-distance custody schedules

When one parent lives in one part of the country and the other parent lives in another part of the country, it can be difficult to organize child visitation due to the distance. However, by strategically sharing holidays and summer break, parents can ensure that the children get a chance to spend time with the parent who is far away.

Let's look at how parents might split up common holidays:

  • Three-day weekends: Every year, there are one-day holidays attached to a weekend, creating a three-day weekend. These are excellent opportunities for parents to send the child to the nonresidential parent for a visit. You might choose to send your child to the other parent for all three-day weekends or just some of them.
  • Spring and fall breaks: If your child gets a week off for fall or spring, you can use some or all of these breaks to send your child to visit the nonresidential parent.
  • Winter break and associated holidays: Some children receive a considerable amount of time off for winter and Christmas break. It may be an excellent idea to divide this time between yourself and the nonresidential parent.
  • Thanksgiving: Many parents choose to alternate who gets the child for Thanksgiving each year.
  • Video calls: In between holidays and three-day weekends, parents should create time so they can have regular video chats with their child over the internet.
  • Summer breaks and other vacations: Your child may be able to take other vacations from school that aren't listed above. He or she will also have extended summer breaks. The nonresidential parent might be able to spend a long period of time with his or her child, such as six to eight weeks, during the summer time. Nonresidential parents may also be given two to four weeks of other vacation time with the child annually.

Is the 60-40 child custody plan right for your children?

There's a trend that's growing in family law courts throughout the United States that involves awarding two parents shared and equal custody of their children. These parenting arrangements often result in children spending half the time with one parent and half the time with the other parent. The logistical challenges of having parents live in two different homes have resulted in numerous types and varieties of shared custody arrangements, which North Carolina parents may choose to employ. This article will discuss what the 60-40 plan looks like.

The 60-40 parenting plan involves the children staying with one parent 60 percent of the time and the other parent 40 percent of the time. Here are two incarnations of the 60-40 plan:

  • The 3-4 day split: In this plan, the children will spend three days with one parent and four days with the other. Those days could be divided during any time of the week. Perhaps each month, the children will switch days so that, over time, the children are spending an equal number of weekends with both parents.
  • The every-long-weekend plan: In this plan, one parent will have the children every weekend for three days. Perhaps it will be Friday-Saturday-Sunday, or Saturday-Sunday-Monday. Then the other parent will have the children during the four weekdays.

Are some careers better for marriage than others?

North Carolina spouses get divorced for an unlimited number of reasons. However, sometimes statistics show something interesting about trends with regard to divorce. For one thing, we know that money problems can cause a lot of divorces, and these days social media can also be one of the culprits. But what about your job? Could your choice of profession make you more susceptible to divorce?

The career website Zippia recently calculated some statistics on what careers have the highest likelihood of divorce. The website found that people working in the following professions tend to have some of the highest divorce rates:

  • Mechanics and auto service techs
  • Chemical technicians
  • Animal caretakers who don't work on farms
  • Assistants at libraries
  • Military service members
  • Medical assistants
  • Carpenters
  • Probation officers
  • IRS agents
  • Tax examiners
  • Tax collectors
  • Logisticians

Child custody: Considering other family relationships

You and your soon-to-be ex-spouse are probably not the only ones who have a loving relationship with your child. Your child may have formed strong bonds with other siblings, grandparents, aunts, uncles, family friends, teachers, coaches and other individuals. North Carolina courts will consider these relationships when deciding a child custody matter; as such, so should you.

In most cases, North Carolina parents maintain the same child custody arrangements, parenting plans and visitation schedules for all of their children. For example, if you and your ex-spouse have two children, both of those children will stay with each other when living with or visiting the other spouse. However, there may exist some situations in which one parent has full custody of one child, and the other parent has full custody of the other child.

Breaking the news of divorce to a small child

If you and your ex are getting a divorce and you have a small child, you may want to consider what is the best way to break the news to your child.

Although every youngster is different in terms of maturity and what kind of information they should hear, for 5- to 8-year-olds, there are a few things you can do to ensure you handle this appropriately.

Is an 80/20 child custody plan right for you?

Not all parents can make an equal, 50/50, parenting schedule work. The 50/50 schedule usually requires two parents who have normal work schedules, live close to one another and their children's schools and can diplomatically communicate with one another. If these conditions aren't true for you and your ex, then you might consider an 80/20 plan.

At its core, the 80/20 plan involves your children spending 80 percent of the time with one parent, and 20 percent of the time with the other. These plans can be organized in a lot of different ways depending on you, your ex and your children's schedules. The most common way is to do an alternating weekend schedule. Friday afternoon to Monday morning, the children will be with the 20 percent parent on alternating weekends.

3 signs that divorce mediation could work for you

Most North Carolina spouses can see the benefit of divorce mediation. After all, if you and your spouse can come to an out-of-court agreement, you will both save a great deal of time and money. However, divorce mediation is not for everyone -- particularly spouses who cannot see eye to eye.

With this in mind, how can you tell if divorce mediation might work for bringing your divorce to conclusion?

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