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How do I avoid parenting time issues during spring break?

Posted on in Child Custody

Winter is winding down, and many families – especially the kids – anxiously await spring break. For divorced or separated parents, this can be a stressful time as it affects the regular possession schedule. But making this an enjoyable experience for your kids should be the goal for both you and your ex.

If you and your co-parent follow a Texas Standard Possession Order (SPO), you likely already know that the Lone Star State has an odd-even schedule over spring break possession. The rules differ depending on whether parents live within 100 miles of each other.

Spring break parenting time rules

Under an unmodified SPO, co-parents who live within 100 miles alternate possession during spring break each year. For 2022, that means possessory conservators – noncustodial parents – have the children. The rules state:

  • Possession begins at 6 p.m. on the day the child is dismissed from school for spring vacation.
  • Possession ends at 6 p.m. on the day before school resumes.

Possessory conservators have possession every year during spring break for co-parents who live more than 100 miles apart. These rules preempt regular parenting schedules unless you and your ex agree to a different arrangement.

Strategies to keep it fun

Parenting time disputes often keep stress levels high between co-parents. However, here are some strategies to keep it all about your kids:

  • Know the schedule: Mark the dates for spring break on your calendar well in advance and plan accordingly, depending upon whether it’s your turn to have the kids.
  • Plan for work: Be sure to put in for vacation time early if you want to go somewhere for the break. If you can’t take time off, make sure you check with relatives or others who can supervise your children’s activities during the day.
  • Document and share: Text, email or display your plans for spring break on your co-parenting app, so your ex is fully aware of your plans to help avoid any unnecessary anxiety or potential for further conflict.
  • Have a blast!: Spring break is a special time for kids. While a departure from normal might add some stress to your life, remember that a few simple plans to spend quality time with your children will do everyone a world of good.

Be flexible but focused

When co-parents work together, their kids usually recover faster from a divorce or breakup. When you and your ex put aside differences, everyone benefits. However, if they refuse to follow the rules, make sure you document their behavior and pass it along to your legal advisor.

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