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Creating a Safe Space for Children: Parental Schedules during Covid

How can families in the divorce continue to provide their children with parenting, care, and attention during Covid?

If you’re reading this, you may be feeling the weight of your unique family circumstances. You want to shield your children from the urgency and uncertainty that you are feeling.

Despite the great turmoil, pre-pandemic parenting arrangements and schedules are assumed to still be in place. If you and your co-parent are still struggling to agree on a parenting agreement, you may wish to obtain ILA (independent legal advice) to adjust your schedule. 

We have witnessed the potential to move to online litigation, virtual conference calls between parties, and expediated decision making. It is an unprecedented period of adaptation that is considered by most a move in the right direction for access to justice. 

Family lawyers are up to their ears, and a quick solution may not be possible. This is the perfect time to employ mediation. A mediator helps parties to settle their disputes by a process of discussion and narrowing differences.

You can begin by asking your ex the big picture questions. Answer them honestly and fully to the best of your ability: 

  • What are the ideal living arrangements for children? 
  • What would a mutually beneficial parenting schedule look like? 
  • How will holidays unfold each year? 

By having an open and frank discussion with your ex, you will demonstrate that you are willing to reduce conflict. This will help you both by reducing unnecessary legal fees.

If you are still at a standstill, try using free options such as:

coSquare: Our free legal advice platform can help steer you towards some clear first steps. Ask a question in our “Family Law” forum and receive guidance from a licensed lawyer.

Free Legal Advice Clinics: Many cities have some sort of in-person or over the phone options to have a brief meeting with a law student or lawyer to discuss your matter.

If your schedule has been impacted by Covid-19, and you require an emergency motion you should consult a lawyer. Nothing can replace the hands-on assistance from a licensed professional guiding you through a challenging time. A lawyer will help you through the complex legal process.

You can rest assured that when it comes to decisions coming from the court they will be decided based on the best interest of the child. The bill that amended the Divorce Act, Bill C-78, saw its actions taken effect on July 1st, 2020. This was intended to promote the child’s best interests, increase protection against family violence, further the reduction of child poverty, and improve accessibility and efficiency of the family courts.

Good luck and stay safe.

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