For parents who separate or divorce, making decisions in the best interest of their children after the separation or divorce is paramount. There are many decisions to be made at this time, and working out a sustainable parenting plan can be challenging.
Family mediation and parenting coordination can be valuable alternative dispute resolution processes at this time, to help parents come to an arrangement that works for both parents, as well as the children. For parents seeking a resolution on their own, the Department of Justice Canada has an excellent Parenting Plan tool available now on their website.
Called, “Making plans: A guide to parenting arrangements after separation or divorce”, the tool is written as a guide for parents to put their children first. The tool is broken down into a number of sections, starting with an overview of dealing with one’s own feelings and the children’s feelings following separation and divorce, and moving on to evaluating parenting plan options for each individual situation.
This is an invaluable tool for any family dealing with separation or divorce. A number of specific issues are included, such as the impact of family violence, considerations for new relationships or blended families, and what to do if one parents wishes to move away. Helpful advice on including the perspective of the child is also included.
The goal of any alternative dispute resolution process is a durable, long-term agreement; this new tool could help many parents do just that.
At Riverdale Mediation, we offer family mediation and parenting coordination services. Family mediators and parenting coordinators can work with you to develop a sustainable parenting plan. Check out our Getting Started page if you are interested in working with one of our ADR professionals.