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Joint Parenting

At The Law Offices Of Ellen L. Lee, Our Parenting Time Attorney Can Help You Reach A Co-Parenting Agreement That Supports The Well-Being Of Your Children Through A Joint Parenting Arrangement That Preserves Your Relationships With Quality Parenting Time, Drawing Upon Her 35+ Years In Divorce And Family Law.

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Approach Joint Parenting and Parenting Time With The Guidance of an Experienced Attorney in Maryland

One very contentious and emotionally charged aspect of divorce centers on joint parenting arrangements and parenting time. It’s natural to have concerns for your children’s welfare when their parents no longer live together.

Understandably, you want to protect your children during a divorce and uphold your specific preferences for raising them, which may conflict with your spouse’s intentions.

At the Law Offices of Ellen L. Lee, our founding attorney is knowledgeable and experienced in joint parenting, and she will put her counseling background and her 35+ years of experience in divorce and family law to work on your behalf. Contact our office today to schedule a consultation, and we’ll listen to your situation with empathy and kindness while guiding you through the process of creating a parenting plan that caters to the best interests of your children.

The Purpose of a Parenting Plan in Maryland Custody Arrangements

A parenting plan is a written agreement that outlines how parents will collaborate and make decisions for their child’s well-being, even if they are not living together. Whether you are a biological, step, adoptive parent, or a devoted individual recognized by the court as a de facto parent, this plan can inform your co-parenting journey.

Commonly referred to as a custody agreement, a parenting plan serves as a comprehensive guide for handling crucial child-related matters. From determining parenting time (physical custody) to establishing decision-making authority (legal custody), this plan allows you to tailor the arrangements to suit your unique family dynamics. By taking proactive steps and creating your own plan, you retain control over what is right for your family and avoid leaving these pivotal decisions solely in the hands of the court.

In Maryland, a parenting plan is a mandatory requirement for any custody case involving a minor child. Work closely with your Maryland custody attorney to ensure you are prepared to address the necessary documents at your initial court hearing. With a well-crafted parenting plan, you can ensure a smoother and more harmonious co-parenting relationship.

Benefits of Joint Parenting in Maryland

A joint parenting plan is an arrangement where both parents share equal responsibility and decision-making authority for their child. It is becoming increasingly popular among separating or divorced couples who want to prioritize the best interests of their child.

Common benefits of a joint parenting plan often include:

  • Shared Custody
  • Effective Co-Parenting
  • Reduced Conflict
  • Less Stress for the Child

Maryland recognizes two types of custody: physical and legal. Physical custody refers to where the child resides, while legal custody involves decision-making authority for the child’s well-being. A joint parenting plan can encompass both types of custody, allowing both parents to have a say in critical decisions about their child’s education, healthcare, and other significant life choices.

Shared Custody in a Joint Parenting Plan

One of the primary benefits of a joint parenting plan in Maryland is shared custody. It gives both parents an equal amount of time with their child, creating a more balanced and stable environment. Research has shown that children who spend significant amounts of time with both parents tend to have better emotional and psychological well-being.

Shared custody also allows both parents to maintain a strong bond with their child, which can be especially beneficial for young children who need consistent and nurturing relationships with both parents.

A Joint Parenting Plan Can Encourage Effective Co-Parenting

A joint parenting plan also promotes effective co-parenting between separating or divorced couples. When both parents are involved in the decision-making process, it encourages open communication and collaboration, leading to a more positive relationship between the parents, which ultimately benefits the child. Effective co-parenting also sets a good example for children, showing them that their parents can work together and put their needs first.

Joint Parenting Aims for Reduced Conflict

With effective co-parenting comes reduced conflict. By having a joint parenting plan in place, both parents know their roles and responsibilities, reducing the chances of disagreements or misunderstandings. A joint parenting time arrangement helps to create a more peaceful and stable environment for the child, which supports their development.

A Joint Parenting Plan Often Leads to Less Stress for the Child

Divorce or separation can be a stressful time for children, but a joint parenting plan can help alleviate some of this stress. When both parents are involved in their child’s life, it gives them a sense of security and stability. With less conflict and effective co-parenting, the child can feel more supported and loved by both parents.

Critical Items to Consider in Your Joint Parenting Plan

  • Your child’s stability, health, and welfare.
  • Maintaining frequent, regular, and continuing contact with individuals who will act in your child’s best interest.
  • You and the other parent’s ability to share the rights and responsibilities of raising the child.
  • Preserving your child’s relationship with each party, any siblings, other relatives, and individuals who are or may become significant in the child’s life.
  • Your child’s physical and emotional security and protection from conflict and violence.
  • Your child’s developmental needs, including physical safety, emotional security, positive self-image, interpersonal skills, and intellectual and cognitive growth.
  • Your child’s daily needs, including education, socialization, culture and religion, food, shelter, clothing, and mental and physical health.
  • How to:
    • Place your child’s needs above the divorcing spouses’ needs
    • Protect your child from the harmful effects of potential conflict between the divorcing individuals
    • Maintain the child’s relationship with the parties, siblings, relatives, or others who have or likely may have a significant relationship with the child
  • Your child’s age.
  • Any military deployment of a party and its effect, if any, on the parent-child relationship
  • Any prior court orders or agreements.
  • Each party’s role and tasks pertaining to the child and how, if at all, those roles and tasks have changed.
  • The location of each party’s home as it impacts their ability to coordinate parenting time, school, and activities.
  • The divorcing spouses’ relationship with each other, including
    • Their method of communication with each other
    • Whether they can co-parent without harming the child’s social and school life
    • Their plan to resolve potential future disagreements without court intervention
  • Your child’s preference, if age-appropriate.

Customized Joint Parenting Arrangements To Fit Your
Family’s Needs

At the Law Offices of Ellen L. Lee, we understand that every family is unique and requires a customized approach to creating a successful joint parenting plan. Our team works closely with each client to develop a co-parenting agreement that meets their specific needs and supports the best interests of their children.

One of the main benefits of having a joint parenting plan in Maryland is that it promotes effective communication and cooperation between parents. When both parties are actively involved in making decisions for their children, there is a higher chance of finding amicable solutions and avoiding disputes that could negatively impact the child.

Moreover, a joint parenting plan can also provide stability and consistency for children as they transition between two households. By having a clear schedule and routine in place, children know what to expect and can feel more secure in their living arrangements.

Another advantage of joint parenting is that it allows the children to have a meaningful relationship with both parents. In cases where one parent has primary physical custody, the other may only have visitation rights. However, with joint parenting, both parents are actively involved in the child’s life and can build strong bonds and create cherished memories.

Maryland Encourages Joint Parenting Because The Child’s Best Interests Come First

Maryland recognizes the importance of both parents maintaining a meaningful relationship with their child after a divorce. This is why the state encourages joint parenting plans for couples who are no longer together but still share custody of their children.

We are prepared to assess the unique details of your family situation to carefully construct an appropriate joint parenting plan that will put the child’s needs first in the context of your family goals and priorities.

Addressing Your Joint Parenting Goals — Do You Need To Seek Custody Modification or Address Visitation Rights?

Does your existing co-parenting agreement no longer serve the best interests of your child? Have circumstances dictated a new arrangement for shared custody?

Whether you’re initiating the divorce process with children or need to update an existing co-parenting agreement, consulting an attorney with knowledge and experience in drafting joint parenting plans in Maryland protects everyone involved and ensures that your child’s best interests take priority.

Schedule a Consultation to Discuss Joint Parenting Options with Ellen L. Lee, a Maryland Family Law Attorney with Over 35 Years of Experience in Montgomery County

Are you ready to take the next step toward shared custody that supports your child’s well-being and respects the rights of both parents? Contact the Law Offices of Ellen L. Lee at (301) 279-0692 or complete our online form. Located near the Rockville Courthouse, our law office assists clients in Montgomery County and throughout Maryland. Don’t hesitate to reach out with any questions or concerns you may have about parenting time agreements.

We offer multiple options for our initial information-gathering session to suit your preferences and needs. You can choose to meet with us in person at our boutique law office in Rockville, Maryland, or opt for a Zoom video conference or phone call. We understand the importance of flexibility and offer evening and weekend appointments for your convenience.

Why Choose the Law Offices of Ellen L. Lee, LLC

Ellen L. Lee has devoted over 35 years of unwavering commitment to aiding individuals and families in Montgomery County, Maryland with their family law needs. Grounded in counseling and psychology, she provides personalized guidance and assistance to her clients in an inviting atmosphere — prioritizing effective communication while forging new beginnings amidst family law disputes.

  • Tenacious & Compassionate Legal Support
  • Trusted Guidance that Exceeds Expectations
  • Full Range of Family Law Services
  • Flexible Consultation Times: Nights and Weekends are Available
  • Over 35 Years of Experience Practicing Family Law in Montgomery County, Maryland

Our Founding Attorney conveniently meets with clients via phone, video conference, or in person at our office in Rockville, Maryland.

Questions or Schedule An Appointment? Click to Call (301) 279-0692

Questions or Schedule An Appointment? Click to Call (301) 279-0692

Ask a Question, Describe Your Situation,
Request a Consultation

Fill out the form below or feel free to call us at (301) 279-0692(301) 279-0692

We are available for weekend and evening appointments.
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Law Offices of
Ellen L. Lee, LLC

We are available for weekend and evening appointments.