Is your parenting plan ready for COVID-19?

On behalf of Stange Law Firm, PC posted in Child Custody on Wednesday, March 18, 2020.

Missouri parents may be feeling like the world turned upside-down overnight. Due to the COVID-19 outbreak, most school districts have closed their doors to children for the next several weeks as Missouri joins other states in an attempt to prevent the further spread of the pandemic. Adults are being encouraged to work from home if possible, and all across the country, special rules are being put into place to close or limit hours of businesses deemed nonessential. With kids off school for the foreseeable future, many families may be wondering how the crisis will affect their parenting plan.

Even though children will not be attending school, many school districts are providing ways for children to continue learning at home for the next several weeks. Some children were sent home with bags full of supplies and instructions, and some teachers are offering online groups and classes. Families that were settled into a daily routine now scramble to try to figure out how to arrange child 1care on the fly, and provide extra meals at home that children would have otherwise been provided at school.

For families with unique child custody arrangements, the sudden changes may be difficult to cope with. Parents may need to temporarily change custody or visitation times to accommodate children that need to learn from home in the coming weeks. Successful co-parenting may be the key to making sure children are not nervous or feeling “in the way” as parents try to juggle a new schedule amid the shutdowns and quarantines.

Even though these changes are unexpected for many Missouri families, parents can still contact an attorney to update their parenting plan during the crisis. In addition to providing assistance to establish a formal parenting plan order, an attorney can help parents temporarily modify an agreement to cope with unexpected situations. Parents can focus on working together to make sure their children receive the care they deserve without fear that a new schedule will violate an existing court order and cause problems down the road.

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