Child custody issues may crop up during holidays

When Massachusetts parents begin planning for the holidays following a divorce, they usually avoid having to deal with issues such as visitation schedules until the last minute. Unfortunately, this can make their holidays more stressful than they already are. A few tips may help individuals to effectively deal with issues related to child custody during the holidays.

First, after getting divorced, it is a good idea to review the settlement agreement and/or court order to become familiar with the times and dates that both parents are typically scheduled to have the children. However, it is worth noting that holiday visitation may override a couple’s regular schedules from one year to the next. For this reason, it makes sense to be proactive and — when possible — to speak with an ex about the current year’s holiday schedule ahead of time.

When dealing with holiday schedules after divorce, being flexible is paramount. A court order might be clear, but family members’ plans might not always fit into it perfectly. If some family members plan to make a special holiday trip, it is important to ensure that one’s children see all parties even if this disrupts the regular child custody schedule. Helping the children to maintain relationships with all family members can be beneficial for the child in the long run.

Child custody can quickly become a sticking point during a divorce proceeding in Massachusetts. Unfortunately, it is common for parents to have problems about child custody matters during the holidays. The right legal assistance can help parents to address these issues appropriately while always keeping in mind the best interests of the children.

Source:, “Strategies for Successful Co-Parenting During the Holiday Season”, Myra Fleischer, Nov. 14, 2016