Alternative Child Custody Schedules for Parents

Posted by Leslie SarjiJun 11, 20150 Comments

The typical child custody schedule often places primary custody of a child with one parent and gives the other parent custody or visitation every other weekend. While this arrangement works well for many separated families, some parents run into problems with this arrangement because they have jobs that require them to work unconventional hours. When it comes to managing a child custody arrangement and a nontraditional work schedule, it can sometimes be difficult for these parents to establish a custody or visitation schedule that works well with the time constraints imposed on their life due to their job.

Examples of Nontraditional Work Schedules

Many occupations require that workers keep unusual hours. Rather than the standard 9am-5pm, or 8am-6pm normal business hours, a number of professionals and workers must work either very early in the morning, late into the night, or lengthy chunks of time.

  • Early Risers. There are a number of occupations that require employees to be at work before the sun comes up. Some of these jobs include nurses, delivery persons, bakers, and waste management.
  • Night Owls. Many jobs require working late into the night, such as entertainers, health care professionals, assembly workers, and many positions that have emergency 24-hour type call services.
  • Lengthy Shift Work. Quite a few professions require workers to work for lengthy chunks of time, such as 24-hour or 48-hour shifts. Doctors, nurses, and emergency personnel, such as police and firefighters, are often required to complete shifts of this duration.

The problem with nontraditional work hours and child custody arrangements is that sometimes family lawyers don't realize that standard or customary child custody or visitation schedule will not mesh well with a parent's work schedule. Often it is presumed that parents don't work weekends, or don't need special accommodations, and that the normal child custody arrangement will work just fine.

What's The Solution?

If you are a parent with a nontraditional work schedule, make sure that you work with your child custody lawyer to come up with a custody schedule that works well with your work schedule. Your goal should be to maximize your available time with your child, so work with your attorney, and the child's other parent, to get the most out of your time with your child. Make sure you let your child custody lawyer know that you have a nontraditional work schedule that needs to be taken into consideration when devising a custody or visitation schedule.

Because parents are given an opportunity to arrive at a child custody or visitation arrangement that works best for them via a parenting plan, it is possible to be a little creative when developing your plan so that your child custody or visitation time fits with your work schedule. While no child custody or visitation schedule is perfect in the eyes of the parent, it might be possible to come to a compromise that gives you more quality time to spend with your child.

Contacting a Charleston Child Custody Lawyer

It is perfectly natural to want to maximize the amount of quality time you can spend with your child when they do not live with you full-time. Having a nontraditional work schedule can add an extra wrinkle to a child custody or visitation arrangement, but it may be possible to make accommodations that are conducive to being with your child in a meaningful way when you are not working. Contact an experienced child custody attorney to discuss your options. Contact the Charleston child custody lawyers at Sarji Law Firm, LLC today.

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