Tennessee Divorce Guide

Visitation (Parenting Time)

Parties to a separation or divorce Visitationhave the option of submitting a visitation schedule or parenting plan to the court during the legal process. A parenting plan will detail the particulars on when each parent will have the children, and what responsibilities they will have. If you cannot agree on a visitation schedule, the court will order one. Features typically found in a visitation agreement where the non-custodial spouse is concerned are:

  • alternate weekend visitation (3-day weekends included)
  • mid-week visitation
  • sharing of the children during periods of school recess -winter, spring and summer
  • New Year’s Eve
  • Easter
  • Rosh Hashanah and Yom Kippur
  • Thanksgiving, and Christmas with one parent or the other in alternate years
  • Father’s Day with Father, Mother’s Day with Mother
  • alternate years on the children’s birthdays, and open communication by phone and computer

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You may wish to consider these issues and whether or not they should be a part of the agreement. Be as specific as you can including the right language in your agreement. How is the decreed custody defined? What are the rights and responsibilities? Who has legal custody? Which holiday does the child spend with you? What time and where may the other parent pick the child up? What time should the child be returned home?

What is the procedure to follow if either of you are running late and won’t be there on time? What happens when the child is sick and due to go to the other parent’s house? How much notice should you be given if they are planning a vacation? How far away may the other spouse move? What about future partners? Should those partners stay overnight in front of the children? The smart way to address these issues is to create your own online parenting plan.

If there is a chance your Ex will try to manipulate you or the kids with the visitation schedule, put an on-line Parenting Plan in place. Nothing stops the game-playing like a schedule in black and white. Simply tell your Ex that in order for the schedule to be changed, it must be discussed and agreed to; otherwise it is not changing.

[Tennessee Code – Volume 6A, Title 36, Sections 36-6-301]

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