Who Gets the Kids This Holiday?

Who Gets the Kids this Holiday? by Joshua Katz

{3:30 minutes to read}

When putting together a parenting plan, attorneys should be aware of all religious holidays, as well as civil holidays, that are important to the client. It goes without saying that children are to be with their mothers for Mother’s Day and their fathers for Father’s Day. But what about the rest of the holidays?

I can’t tell you how many clients I was dealing with on an emergency basis the week before Mother’s Day this year, because the clients couldn’t work out arrangements without help from counsel.

Another example of a holiday that clients often argue over (which I can never figure out!) is New Year’s Eve. Clients fight for holidays without considering whether they want kids with them on those dates or not. Do you really want your kids with you on New Year’s Eve? Birthdays can be another sensitive issue. Is it truly important for the kids to be with you on the day you turn 37?

So what should clients do when faced with these situations?

  • First and foremost, use common sense.
  • Pick-ups and drop-offs should be shared.
  • Be willing to bend in order to meet halfway – literally.
  • Be on time.

Being on time is especially important. You disappoint your children, not your ex-spouse, when you are late. At the same time, if dad is 15 minutes late due to traffic, most people would agree that a police report is not in order. If this is a consistent problem, keep a diary. When it becomes a pattern, and dad is consistently 20 minutes to 40 minutes late every time, now you can show the pattern and put some sort of provisions in place, such as forfeiting or rescheduling the visit.

There is a presumption in the law that children are best off having both parents in their lives, and it is a fundamental right for parents to visit with their children. The courts strive to give as much time as reasonable, but that doesn’t necessarily mean equal time for both parents.

Even though mom and dad have split up, and may hate each other, they still have children in common who love both parents. Think about the children first.

Next time your ex-spouse wants to spend time with the kids on a certain holiday, what will you do? Will you have a plan in place ahead of time? Will you use common sense and keep your children’s best interests in mind?

Joshua R. Katz, Esq.
Plaine & Katz, LLP
Queens Divorce Lawyers
Phone: 718-268-0279
Fax: 718-233-2610

Leave a Reply

Your email address will not be published. Required fields are marked *