Hoover Krepelka, LLP - Lawyer

Board Certified Family Law Specialists Serving Northern California

Should you give your child a choice of custody arrangements?

As parents, you want to do what is right by your child. You have both talked things over and because your schedules are similar and you live near each other, you think it might be healthy for your child to help put together the custody schedule.

Remember that this could be a tricky situation. In a lot of cases, a child won't want to take sides and could feel that this is almost like a trick where you're looking for them to make a mistake. However, on the flip side, it is a good learning experience and does give your child some control over the visitation schedule.

Should you let your child decide on the custody schedule?

Everyone's situation is going to be unique, so there is no correct answer. However, a good option is to give your child a choice out of schedules that you've already decided would work. For example, if you and your ex-spouse agree that a schedule where you switch custody each weekend, every four days or every other weekend would work, then you could talk to your child and see which one they would prefer. Some children will want to spend time with both parents and choose a schedule with more frequent transitions, while others like stability and may choose to stay at one home for longer before staying with the other parent.

The best-case scenario is that you and your ex-spouse are able to come up with a few options for your child. If you cannot or have many responsibilities at work and home, you may need to sit down with your child and explain why the schedule that you've chosen is the only one that will work right now.

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