Which Parent Gets Custody During the Holidays?

 Posted on December 09, 2023 in DuPage County Divorce Attorneys

IL family lawyerFor parents, the prospect of spending a major holiday without their children can be jarring. Most major holidays are considered family affairs. Unfortunately, when two parents are no longer living together, one of them is likely to miss seeing their children on some important holidays. Holiday parenting time should be addressed in the parenting plan you will be legally required to have before your divorce is finalized.

Attorneys and mediators can offer many different creative options for parents who must share their children’s time during the holidays after a divorce. A lot of different factors can go into deciding what type of arrangement is best, such as how far apart the parents live and whether they both practice the same religion. A qualified Wheaton, IL, child custody lawyer can give you some ideas to consider and help negotiate with the other parent on your behalf. 

Creative Holiday Custody Options for Divorced Parents in DuPage County, IL

Spending the holidays a little differently can be a big adjustment. However, most parents and children adapt to their new normal rather quickly. Creative custody options for the holiday season include:

  • Change the date - Both divorced parents of minor children and still-together parents of adult children with their own families use this technique to get the family holiday experience they want, even if their children must be elsewhere on the official holiday date. Celebrate the major holiday a few days early or a few days late when your children can be there. Children usually love having two celebrations, especially when presents are involved. 
  • Go by which holiday is significant to each parent - If you and the other parent are from different cultures or different religions, you may be able to simply arrange your parenting time calendar so that each parent has the children on the holidays that hold significance to them. 
  • Split the day - Parents who live close to each other can arrange for a mid-day custody handoff. A child may wake up and open presents at one parent's house, then go to the other parent’s house before the holiday meal is served.
  • Consider overall parenting time - It is common for the parent who does not have primary custody to get the children for the holidays. For example, if the kids live with their dad and go to school in Wheaton, it might make sense for them to spend holiday breaks with their papa in Ohio. Consider whether having primary custody year-round is worth giving up holidays. 

Holiday child custody can be an emotionally charged issue. It is best to have an attorney representing you as you begin to discuss where your child will spend holidays.

Contact a Wheaton, IL, Child Custody Lawyer

Andrew Cores Family Law Group is highly skilled at building creative and convenient parenting plans. Our dedicated DuPage County, IL, child custody lawyers will do all we can to establish the right plan for you. Contact us at 630-871-1002 for a complimentary consultation. 

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