Parenting Time: Developing Plans

Parents who come to court about child custody and parenting time (also called "visitation") face decisions about parenting plans for their children. This section gives you information about parenting after separation or divorce. It helps you understand what your children may be going through and what they may need to adjust to the changes in their lives. It also gives you information to make a parenting plan for you, your children’s other parent, and your children that is based on the best interest of your children.

Click on any of the topics below to get more information.

Children and Separation or Divorce

When parents separate or get a divorce, their children are affected in many different ways. Get information to help you understand what your children may be going through so you can help them cope with your separation. You know your children best and you can use the information provided here to help them and come up with a parenting plan that is in their best interests.

Parenting Plans

A parenting plan, also called a "custody and visitation agreement" or a "time-share plan," is the parent's written agreement about how much time the child will spend with each parent, and how the parents will make decisions about the child's welfare and education. Learn what you should think about when deciding on a parenting plan that is in the best interests of your child, what should be in your parenting plan, and how to write up your parenting plan.

Needs of Children of Different Ages

Find information about what children of different ages may need from you as they try to cope with separation or divorce.  Learn how to best work with your children and with their other parent to make sure your children can adjust to the changes in a loving and supportive environment.

Parenting Resources

Find about resources that may be available in your community to help you in parenting your children during your separation.

CAUTION: This information is for parents who are not facing issues of drug abuse, sexual abuse, or domestic violence.

If your family has problems with drug abuse, violence, neglect, or sexual abuse, it can be very hard to make a safe parenting plan that works. Get help from an agency or counselor. Find resources in your county.

Read more about domestic violence and child custody. Read more about child abuse. Find child abuse resources. Find Child Protective Services in your county.

Find information and help on substance abuse issues.

Once the court is involved, there may be additional ways to help you create a safe parenting plan, and the court’s Family Court Services can help you.