mother with son

When two parents go through a divorce, they are required to determine arrangements for the future of their children. This includes establishing child custody. Usually, parenting time is linked to the physical custody of a child. Depending on the custody arrangement, parents must figure out how much time they each get to spend with their child. This is done with a parenting plan.

Choosing a Type of Physical Custody

Physical custody refers to the parent with whom the child lives and spends the majority of their time. When determining a physical custody arrangement, parents can either participate in joint or sole physical custody. Joing physical custody means the child spends a significant amount of time with both their parents. Sole physical custody means that the child lives with one parent most of the time and usually visits with the other parent. 

Examples of Parenting Arrangements

There are numerous ways to create a parenting plan in the state of New York. It is important to keep in mind that courts prefer to give children time with both of their parents as long as it benefits them. The following are some commonly used parenting plans to split the time equally with their child:

  • The 2-2-5-5 schedule: The child spends two days with one parent, two days with the other, then five days with the first parent, and another five days with the second parent.
  • The 3-4-4-3 schedule: The child spends three days with one parent and four days with the other parent. The next week, the child spends four days with the first parent and three days with the other.
  • Alternating weeks: The child spends seven days with one parent and seven days with the other.

It is important to know that there are other arrangements that do not offer equal time to both parents. This can be a 60/40 schedule that allows a parent to have extended weekends with the child or three days during the week. In addition to this, 70/30 schedules exist in which a parent can have their child every weekend or every third week of the month.

Creating a Parenting Time Plan

When creating a parenting time plan, it should be a written document that includes several factors regarding how the arrangement is divided. This can include the following:

  • How parents will split time with the child during the week
  • How parents will split time with the child on the weekends
  • How parents will split time with the child during school breaks
  • How parents will split time with the child on holidays and special occasions
  • if/when each parent can take the child on vacation

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