When a relationship ends and parties have a child together, a parenting plan or residential schedule should be prepared to designate the child's time with each parent. The parenting plan also addresses when each parent has the child during school breaks or vacations. This post focuses on the winter break or winter vacation.
When creating the parenting plan's winter break schedule, part one discussed that parents tend to split up the winter break so each parent has time with the children during the holidays. When the parents split the children's winter break, a midway point or exchange day is designated specifying when one parent's time with the children ends and when the other's parent holiday time with the kids begin.
Most parents use Christmas Day for the designated exchange. This is because both parents want to ensure they see the children on Christmas Day. Parents need to define the exchange time on Christmas Day. The idea being that the parent who has the first half of the break spends Christmas morning with the children, and the parent who has the children for the second half of the break celebrates Christmas with the children in the late morning or early afternoon. The Christmas Day exchange time can be 10 am, 12 pm, etc. Essentially a time that works with the children's and parents' holiday schedule.
Start and end times for the winter break also need to be established. For example, "In odd numbered years, the children shall reside with mother for the first half of the Winter Vacation beginning when the children are released from school until 12:00 p.m. Christmas Day, and the children shall reside with father for the second half of the Winter Vacation beginning at 12:00 p.m. Christmas Day until the day before school resumes at 5:00 p.m." The schedule reverses in even years so dad has the children for the first half of the Christmas Break and mom the second half. Christmas Eve is usually spent with the parent who has the children for the first half of the break. That way Christmas Eve and Christmas mornings rotate between the parents annually
This is part two of a four part series on creating a winter break schedule. The next post will discuss an alternative to using Christmas Day as the exchange day. AKIONA LAW, PLLC makes the information and materials on this blog available for general informational purposes only. The information provided is not intended to be legal advice. See DISCLAIMER.