Some couples are able to work out a parenting plan or custody arrangement on their own. They then submit their plan to the Minnesota family courts for approval as part of an uncontested divorce filing. Other couples can’t find solutions on their own and require the intervention of a judge.
Minnesota family law judges have experience with reviewing family circumstances and creating custody arrangements that center the best interests of the children. Judges will look at the current relationship each parent has with the children, the needs of the children and even the schedule of the parents when trying to establish the framework for a custody order.
For parents who work in demanding careers, like nurses who work 12-hour shifts or blue-collar professionals who work third shift, it’s common to worry about how the demands of their job might impact a judge’s custody order. Thankfully, intensive careers don’t limit your right to parenting time.
Your family can work around any kind of schedule
People who work third shift, those who travel internationally for their jobs and even those with unpredictable schedules, like first responders, can still find effective ways to share custody. Your family can be as creative as it needs to be when it comes to setting your own parenting plan or asking for specific terms from a judge.
You may need to work rules into your parenting plan that discuss the process for changing or rescheduling parenting time if your schedule suddenly changes. You may also need to look at the difference between parenting time where you are with the children and third-party time, such as when the children are in daycare or school, to find a solution that gives you fair access and time with the kids.
The courts should try to support you in your efforts to maintain a close relationship with your children.
Don’t be afraid to push for parenting parity
One of the biggest mistakes parents make in a pending divorce is to not openly declare their desire to parent as much as possible. They may assume that the demands of their career will inevitably lead to the judge giving their ex more parenting time.
Making it clear that you want to prioritize spending as much time as possible with your kids can help you push for a reasonable division of parenting time in your upcoming divorce.