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what do you wish you had put in divorce settlement/parenting agreement? - Page 2

post #21 of 305
I've read a custody agreement that ensured child would be with each parent on the parent's birthday as well as Mother's/Father's Day.
post #22 of 305
Make sure that your parenting plan prioritize things like holidays vs. school breaks vs. special occasions, etc. -- that is, make sure you spell out what kind of event takes precedence over another kind, so that if your birthday falls on his weekend you both know which one of those takes priority, likewise if you have the kids Christmas day but that falls on his weekend, etc. It can be a hassle if this kind of thing isn't clear.
post #23 of 305
Hi,

my situation is a little different because we were never married and we split up when I was pregnant. I didn't have a clue about custody/child support/etc etc. If I had, I soooo would have taken care of it before I had ds! So...after my ds was born and the ex started coming around (and acting like a real charmer, let me tell ya...) I found myself a new (sleep-deprived, post-c-section pain) mama sitting in a lawyer's office totally freaking out. Luckily, the lawyer had a standard custody agreement that was actually really cool and detailed. It had a lot of the stuff in it already that you guys are talking about. Things I never would have thought of because I had never been through anything like this. Anyway, he just had me add some things of my own that were really important. I added that my ds could not be in the home of anyone who smoked anything inside, because the ex smoked pot inside and I was really worried about that (and his poor judgment in relation to it). Also that he could not have any visits if under the influence of anything...I think the exact language was something like "for 24 hours proceeding the visit". We also did supervised visits until ds was 6 months, then started a very gradual visitation program.

Good luck
post #24 of 305
Thread Starter 
i'm hoping things like holidays will be fairly simple since he doesn't want to share physical custody. he sees them for a MAX of 10 hours a week, usually more like 4-6. nonetheless, everything will be put into writings. god, i never thought i'd be in this place. though, i suspect none of us did... :
post #25 of 305
Things I have that I like:
-Holiday (and birthday) schedules taking precedence over weekends
-He has to pay 52% of educational expenses (which is vague, but our DD is in private school, and my legal source says that can be interpreted as an educational expense.)
-He has the kids for two weeks in the summer (one in July and August), and he is supposed to let me know when those weeks are by May 1st or else he doesn't get them. He never takes those weeks!

Things I didn't get that should have been in there:
-They should have made him sell his car or refi. Mine was paid off, but his was only a year old when he left me for someone else. Both names are on the loan, but he got the car. He hasn't paid on time EVER, and it is actually almost a year late in getting paid off because he is that far behind. My lawyer said you can't make someone refinance, but I would never ever let that happen again. My credit is so in the toilet.
-We don't address the $ of extracurricular activities and I get nickle and dimed left and right on those.
-Right of first refusal. XH dumps his kids on the girlfriend all of the time. In the early days, he actually had his gf's 14 year old sister babysit our autistic child, and there was nothing I could do about it. Now, they just bring the kids home early when they have stuff to do.
-Sleeping/living arrangements when they are at their dad's. XH and gf have a 2 bedroom house right now, and my 9 year old DD is having to share a room with her 12 year old brother and gf's 5 year old son. : And there's nothing I can do about it. I know someone whose kids stay in a tack room of an old (non-converted but no longer used) horse barn when with their dad.

Things I wish I didn't have in there but I do:
-The two weeks in the summer (but I fought that as much as possible.)

Some parents also have problems with their exes not letting the kids talk to them when visiting. If you anticipate that being a problem, you'll want to write in that you will have unlimited phone access to the kids when they are with him.
post #26 of 305
Thread Starter 
my god, i never knew what other single parents had to deal with. for all of us.

these suggestions are great btw, much more thorough than the NOLO parenting agreement book i spent $25 on.
post #27 of 305
Quote:
Originally Posted by Still_Snarky View Post
my god, i never knew what other single parents had to deal with. for all of us.

these suggestions are great btw, much more thorough than the NOLO parenting agreement book i spent $25 on.
This was a good idea for you to post this- wish I had gotten more advice from "been there, done that" parents! My lawyer was good but too nice and by the book.
post #28 of 305
I haven't done my agreement yet, but I intend to put in a clause about medical stuff - ie vaccinating, medical treatments if God forbid they ever get sick or are in an accident. And schooling. I want to home school or alternative school and while he agrees now, it might not be so convienient for him in 5 years.
post #29 of 305
Something I like, but will likely never use b/c my ex is, erm, something other than reasonable, is the language before the "possesion" schedule which says, "Possesion to be as agreed by both parties. In the absence of agreement, the following shall apply..." It leaves the door open for making workable arrangements, but gives an outline of what to do in lieu of that.

I wish we had something about our (ex's and my) birthdays.

We live 1000 miles away from my family, so as we move from Temporary Orders to Final, it is imperative to me that I retain my two uninterrupted weeks during the summer, during the time span that I want, so we can go home.
post #30 of 305
I wish we had a clause making overnights conditional on DD's father keeping up with regular visits (not overnights) here.

He currently has open visitation at our house with 15 days notice (he lives in another country) and 5 weeks (overnights) per year with her in his country (3 in summer and 2 at Xmas; or 5 weeks in summer - alternating years).

But, he seems to have decided to stop visiting her here. And those summer/Xmas weeks just seem too much at her age (4 now) when it will have been 6 (some years, 12 other years) months since they have been in the same place together.

So far, it's not a major issue since he seems willing to work out other arrangements. But if he ever gets a bug up his rear end...
post #31 of 305
Thread Starter 


anything else? we're starting to discuss these things in our sessions.
post #32 of 305
:
post #33 of 305
Thread Starter 
Quote:
Originally Posted by kimbernet View Post
:
hope this thread can be of some use.
post #34 of 305
BUMPing this for LoveOhm (and others)
post #35 of 305
: My husband and I are attending our first counseling session tonight but I'm trying to be proactive and prepare for the worst should it happen. I'm a glass half-full type of gal but don't want my head in the sand.
post #36 of 305
Thread Starter 
Quote:
Originally Posted by GC_Mom View Post
: My husband and I are attending our first counseling session tonight but I'm trying to be proactive and prepare for the worst should it happen. I'm a glass half-full type of gal but don't want my head in the sand.
Good luck mama. Though my stbx and I are divorcing we've done 6 months of therapy and plan to go for a while longer. Regardless of the outcome I don't believe the time is wasted.
post #37 of 305
I plan on adding into mine that STBX will pay half of all childcare expenses in addition to child support. DS may need braces in the future so I will put that he will pay half of all dental expenses. Also that BOTH parents must approve non-emergent and/or routine medical care before any care takes place. This should prevent him from getting DS vaccinated or circ'd (though I very much doubt he would - it's hard enough to get him to take DS to an appointment!).
post #38 of 305
Some of mine:
-A full background check is provided to the other when one of us plans on living with someone.
-$100/month put into a college fund. Unfortunately, it was split as $50 each and I have no clause for proof of investment.

Wish were different:
-"health insurance" does not include dental. If you include health, define it as "medical" and "dental." Not a big expense but makes a difference.
-Texas standard for kids over 5 to get a full 30 days at the other parent's in the summer, where you get 1 weekend. I wish I had restricted this to 2 weeks max. My DS comes back 10 pounds heavier, mouthy, and nearly sick right before school starts. Also, wish I had specified when the summer vacation could be taken so we're not scrambling to get DS detoxed and healthy in under 2 weeks.

I've got other stuff I wish were different, but nothing I can do anything about. My X doesn't file accurate income so I have a slim chance of updating the monthly child support payment. It's locked in at $350 now. Been the same since the divorce was finalized in 2001! Texas allows for a re-eval every 3 years, but unless he starts doing something better, I'm stuck.

Hope it helps!
post #39 of 305
Quote:
Originally Posted by Mama_of_1 View Post
Some of mine:
-A full background check is provided to the other when one of us plans on living with someone.
Great idea! XH and I both separately had DH background checked when we started dating. DH would be offended if he knew (I'd know him for 9 years), but I felt better for doing it. If it was mandated, I wouldn't feel as guilty for having it done.
post #40 of 305
Thread Starter 
Quote:
My X doesn't file accurate income so I have a slim chance of updating the monthly child support payment. It's locked in at $350 now.
Is that standard? My stbx doesn't make much and lies about his income but I'm still shocked at how low that is...not that i know anything about it. I think I'll be getting about 1800-2200 in cs for my two kids.
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