Pre-Planning For Holidays During Mediation Could Save The Day
Most families look forward to the holidays, planning family events and enjoying time together. For families that have become divided through divorce or separation, however, holidays can be stressful and emotional times full of bitterness and resentment. It’s a sad reality for many British Columbia families. Perhaps it doesn’t have to be, however, and pre-planning during mediation or custody proceedings may be the solution.
Many divided families end up in heated arguments during the holidays as parents vie for time with their kids. Family law professionals say they see a spike in business just before and just after Christmas as families try and arrange holiday gatherings and winter vacations. Courtrooms are often extra busy beginning in late November as parents attempt to push through motions for additional or adjusted custody and visitation time.
When arguments over children get out of hand, it is the children who suffer the most. The courts strive to act in the best interests of the children, and so should parents. One way to avoid debates over holidays and vacations is to work these annual events into custody arrangements. More and more often, parents are now including Christmas, Hanukkah and other important holidays in their custody agreements. By settling matters in advance, there should be no need for debates when the time arrives.
Agreements are best made when both parties are discussing options, rather than fighting for control. Mediation is an excellent, non-confrontational, method of arriving at settlements for custody arrangements and other divorce or separation issues in British Columbia. By working with a caring and experienced family law firm, a person can hope to achieve an amicable and easily executed settlement.
Source: National Post, “Dreaming of a Christmas free from custody battles: Family lawyers say holiday season is their busiest time“, Ashely Csanady, Dec. 23,2016