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Summer Vacation for Divorced Dads

The Micklin Law Group- Summer Vacation for Divorced Dads

School’s out for the summer, and many parents are thinking about summer vacation. Things are generally easier for married couples, while divorced parents face more challenges when trying to plan their vacations. Many divorced dads have joint custody of their children and are likely on a set parenting schedule. But if you’re a dad who has a specific vacation in mind, your travel dates may not coincide with the days when you have your kids. You may also want to take an extended vacation. Here’s more on the rights you have as a divorced father when it comes to taking a vacation with your children.

Do You Need Permission To Take A Vacation?

Some men wonder whether they need their ex’s permission to take their children on vacation. If you have joint custody of the kids, you have the same rights as your co-parent. Of course it is always a good idea to let your ex know that you will be taking the kids on a trip, but you are not required to obtain your co-parent’s “permission” to take a vacation within the state if it is during your regular visitation time. In general, custodial fathers are also permitted to take their children on an extended vacation as long as it doesn’t interfere with their co-parent’s visitation schedule. 

Keep Things Pleasant With Your Ex

What happens when a dad wants to take an extended vacation with the kids, one that would exceed their regularly allotted parenting time? If you have a pleasant relationship with your ex after your divorce, this generally doesn’t pose a problem. You may be able to convince your ex to modify the custody schedule so that you can take that long vacation. This usually comes with an agreement that she will also be able to take the kids for an extended time in the future – which is great news for your kids, who get to take two vacations! If she doesn’t have any vacations planned, your ex may agree to the adjustment without asking for anything in return.

When Your Ex Contests the Vacation

If you have a contentious relationship with your ex, you may need to bring up the matter of an extended vacation in front of a judge. If the judge believes your request is reasonable, he or she may grant you permission to take the kids for an extended length of time. It may also be a good time for you to consider requesting a modification to your custody agreement to allow for a yearly vacation. If your schedule only allows for you to take vacation at a certain time, it’s reasonable to request that you be allowed that time with your kids. Don’t hesitate to fight for that special father-child time; your kids are only young once, and it’s so important to maintain a healthy relationship. 

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