This coronavirus outbreak is still ongoing; some medical professionals say that we should expect more cases in the coming months. While most a hopeful for the new vaccinations, many understand that it will not be readily accessible to the general population for quite some time.
COVID-19 has resulted in a sudden disruption to everyday life almost entirely across the globe. Families and individuals are finding themselves in different and challenging situations that require some creative solutions.
The pandemic has been particularly hard on separated or divorced parents with shared custody. Due to the strict measures being put into practice by the state, carrying out your co-parenting responsibilities may prove to be almost impossible during these challenging times.
How COVID-19 Impacts Custodial Obligations
The prominent issue is whether current custody orders are still in effect. In some jurisdictions, courts have decided that parents should continue their agreement that has been in place before the pandemic, whereas other jurisdictions have taken a more hands-off approach.
Social distancing has been placed by new state mandates in an effort to lessen the virus’s spread. Due to this new practice, separated or divorced couples cannot co-parent as effectively. They need to think about protecting themselves and their children from being potentially exposed to the virus.
Travel restrictions have also disrupted co-parent duties, especially for those parents that live in different places or states. Meeting in neutral places like restaurants or community centers is now next to impossible.
How Divorced Parents Handle These Disruptions
If you had a messy divorce process, it might prove extremely challenging to work out a solution. However, it is still possible to work around these disruptions. Here are a few ways you can:
Modify Custodial Agreement
Your existing agreements may be reviewed to balance the time spent by the child with each parent. Also, modifying can be a good idea; if the co-parent tests were positive, they can’t demand custodial rights over the healthy parent. It’s also useful to include these modifications to be temporary until the current circumstances have changed. An experienced Utah family law attorney could help you modify your agreement to make everyone gets a fair share of time and affection.
Mediations can be an option for divorced couples that have a hard time communicating with each other and reaching an agreement. Mediators bring an unbiased opinion to the table, where both parents can agree on a plan for their child’s welfare.
Zoom, Skype, and other video conference platforms help break the barrier that social meetings can hinder you, especially if one of the co-parents tested positive and is quarantined. However, it would be best to exercise caution toward anything you say, as video conference could also be recorded and used as evidence in courts.
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