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What is a Parenting Plan?

Parenting Plans are agreements made between parents which set out the arrangements for their children following separation. Whilst a Parenting Plan is not legally enforceable, the Plan must be in writing, signed, and dated, by both parents in order to be recognized as a Parenting Plan under the Family Law Act 1975.

When making a Parenting Plan, the most important thing to keep in mind is what is in the best interests of your children. Children have the right to enjoy a relationship with both of their parents, and to be protected from harm.

A Parenting Plan can cover many issues relevant to the care, welfare, and development of children. This could include:

  • How will decisions be made for the children in relation to long-term issues, for instance, what school will the children attend? in what religious faith will the children be raised?
  • Who will the children live with?
  • What time will the children spend with the other parent?
  • What communication will the children have with the parent who they are not living or spending time with, for instance, daily telephone calls or a Wednesday evening video call?
  • What time will the children spend with each parent during holidays and special occasions?
  • How will the parents communicate about matters relating to the children? For instance, will it be by email or text message?
  • How will disputes about the parenting arrangements be resolved in the future?
  • Any other matter relating to the children’s care, welfare, and development.

A Parenting Plan is not enforceable by a Court and is therefore not legally binding on either parent.

A Parenting Plan can also be made following the end of a Court case, as a way of varying the Final Orders made by the Court.

Our team of experienced family lawyers is able to prepare comprehensive Parenting Plans to reflect the agreements of parents and ensure the best interests of the children are met. Contact us today to discuss a Parenting Plan for your circumstances. Call us on 02 9018 9408 or send an email to info@mahonylawyers.com.au.