Divorced parents often find coparenting difficult in the best of times. The COVID-19 pandemic has only complicated it. Parents who share custody may be questioning if, during this unprecedented holiday season, are the current possession orders in force. At Springer & Lyle, we want to help parents deal with co-parenting in ways that make them comfortable but also are in compliance with the law.
Parents are dealing with stay at home orders and many are working from home. Whether schools will be open or closed is almost a daily question. Some travel restrictions are generally in place. Both parents have legitimate concerns about their children but may have opposing opinions about what is best for them.
One parent may be an essential worker and be exposed to either known or potential COVID victims every day. The other parent may question whether the parent, who has a greater risk of becoming infected, should have access to the children at all during this difficult holiday time.
The access question is even more difficult when one parent is a front-line worker, like a doctor, nurse, or first responder. And what should they do if someone in one parent’s household has COVID or has been exposed to someone who has it?
The parents may have differing views on how they themselves respond. One may allow the children play dates, to attend small gatherings, or not enforce social distancing and mask wearing while the other parent is more cautious.
For children who travel by air to see the other parent, one parent may feel air travel is not safe even if when the airline is following all the required guidelines. How are parents expected to deal with these issues during the holidays?
Parents do not have many options. Even if the parent’s concerns are valid, they must still follow the current holiday possession and access court order. The only way this can change is:
- If the court issues an order to either modify or suspend the current possession and access order.
- The parents agree to a change. No matter how much good faith the parents have in the agreement, it should be in writing and filed with the court to be sure one parent is not in contempt of court unless the original order allows for parental agreements.
Attorney Daniel Abasolo at Springer & Lyle can help you answer questions regarding divorce. He can help you make decisions that are best for your family. Contact us at 940.387.0404 to schedule your divorce consultation with Mr. Abasolo.