In a divorce or separation, a “child-up” parenting plan refers to an approach of child rearing that focuses on the emotional and psychological health of the child. This type of parenting plan is like others in that it involves both parents splitting up their responsibilities and rights, but it differs in that usually, a trained social worker or a family law attorney will intervene and create the plan.

The child’s best interest standard holds true in child-up parenting plans, but they take this further by dynamically considering the child’s best interests over time.

What are Some Features and Benefits of Child-Up Parenting Plans?

The following are a few of the standout features and benefits of child-up parenting plans:

  • Dynamic Approach: As the child grows, the parenting plan will change to fit the needs of the child throughout their childhood (from infancy to 18 years-old).
  • Shared Parental Responsibility: Both parents attempt to share parental roles and duties. For instance, rather than one parent being the disciplinarian, both parents will discipline equally.
  • Task-Specific Duties: Instead of a set of broad duties, parents will be allocated specific tasks.
  • Greater Access to Both Parents: The child will have more access to both parents, which can also alleviate the stress and workload of each.
  • Time is Specifically Allocated: A parenting plan can clearly layout how time will be spent, including weekends and holidays. While the plan can lay out a general schedule, both parents must agree to change the plan.

Child-up plans are quite specific and require a lot of attention to detail, as they can even include the child’s diet and religious attendance. An experienced family law attorney can assist you in creating a plan that works best for your child and for your schedule.

Are Child-Up Parenting Plans for Everyone?

Child-up parenting plans are fairly new, so they may not be as widely available as more traditional plans. If they are available, they will only work if both parents are willing and able to cooperate with each other. Child-up parenting plans require a lot of compromise and communication, so any history of hostility or abuse takes this type of plan off the table.

Ultimately, all decisions come down to what is best for the child. If the court doesn’t find a child-up parenting plan to be appropriate for a particular case, a different plan will be issued. So, ultimately it is up to the court to decide if they want to implement the child-up parenting plan.

Do I Need a Lawyer for Assistance with a Child-Up Parenting Plan?

If you are interested in learning more about a child-up parenting plan, then contact an experienced child custody lawyer in your area. Since these parenting plans are very specific and particular, it is important to fill it out correctly. A lawyer can lay out your options for you, help you decide your best course of action, draft a plan that fits your situation, and represent your best interests in any upcoming court proceedings.