Summer is here which means a lot of activities may be different than those involved during the school year. One of those activities is, of course, child visitation, or time sharing, as it is referred to currently. There are altered lengths of time, and vacations that must be dealt with during summer breaks. Attorneys know that summer may slow the progress of some types of cases; but visitation disputes often increase. I would like to offer a tip or two that may make your summer more enjoyable, or at least keep it from becoming uncomfortable in more ways than you expect.
Two important documents that you should have received at the conclusion of your dissolution case were a final judgment and, in some cases, a settlement agreement (if your case was settled prior to a trial before a judge). Those are the documents that you should have handy so that you can refer to them readily when necessary. Should it be necessary for you to contact an attorney about an issue, he, or she, will need to review those documents in order to give you any advice concerning an issue that may be provided for in those papers.
I would suggest that if you have those documents available that you review them now to see what provisions are made for summer visitation. They may provide for giving “notice” so many days in advance of an activity. If so, it is better to follow the provision rather than risk having to forego some privilege because you failed to give the proper notice. A review now may not bring back fond memories, but it may prevent some memories that you would rather not create.
If there are some provisions that call for advance planning, my suggestion is to address it early with the appropriate party. Waiting until the last moment, and having a conflict arise, and then expecting the court to rush to the rescue, is what we sometimes refer to as an “unrealistic expectation”.
Our firm wishes you and all your family a wonderful, fun-filled, and conflict-free summer. I hope these few words may help provide that for you.
-Attorney Ron Sims