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Co-parenting after a divorce

For many Minnesota families who have been through a divorce, one of the biggest challenges can be getting back to everyday life and caring for the children. Most couples create detailed child custody agreements as a part of the divorce process, but how to enforce the agreement and how the parties behave may still remain to be determined after the papers have been signed.

During the process of a divorce, an experienced family law attorney will ask detailed questions about an ideal child custody agreement and then advocate to make the ultimate agreement as close to those ideals as possible. However compromise may be necessary , especially for young children who need consistency and harmony in the family to help get through the major change in their lives.

Whether a divorce is amicable or contentious, parents still need to cooperate if there is any sort of joint custody or visitation schedule. Experts advise that ex-spouses comply closely with their divorce agreement and resist the temptation to stray from the terms even in small ways. Being on time and cooperating with the transfer of custody will be helpful in building a long term routine that both parents and the children can come to rely on. Withholding money or being late to pick up the kids often could have negative ramifications down the line if the dispute ends up back in the courts.

It's also important to keep communication lines open with an ex-spouse. Passing along important information from school or child care providers can help make the transition between parents more seamless for the kids.

Source: Huffington Post, "The 5 C's of Divorced Co-parenting," Marie Hartwell, July 6, 2012.

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