Michigan Family Law Attorney Says Divorced Parents Often Face Stress With Summer Vacations

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Attorney Thomas L . Stroble says divorced parents should communicate with each other about vacation plans for their children and get agreements in writing.

If parents communicate clearly with each other and make their plans well in advance, these problems typically can be avoided. What should be a joyful time for parents and their children should not become a source of conflict and anger.

As the end of summer nears, many people plan to take one last vacation trip with their children before school starts.

Without planning and clear communication, however, that relaxing late-summer getaway could easily turn into a dispute, says Bloomfield Hills, Michigan family lawyer Thomas L. Stroble.

Stroble, who practices at the Oakland County family law firm, The Stroble Law Firm, P.C., says arguments can erupt between divorced parents when vacation plans are not cleared. The parents could end up planning vacations for the same dates, or else they may object to the other’s planned vacation site or activity.

“If parents communicate clearly with each other and make their plans well in advance, these problems typically can be avoided,” Stroble says. “What should be a joyful time for parents and their children should not become a source of conflict and anger.”

Stroble suggests that parents insert vacation and holiday schedules in their divorce or child custody agreement. Often, divorced parents choose alternating years to take their children on vacation or evenly divide holidays. For example, the children may spend the Fourth of July with their mother, while the father spends time with them on Labor Day weekend.

If the vacation and holiday schedule is not spelled out in a formal agreement, parents can still set dates and plans several months in advance and exchange those plans in writing, Stroble says.

“As with many issues in a divorce, getting an agreement in writing is very important because it avoids confusion and helps to protect your rights and interests as a parent,” Stroble says.

Sometimes, work or other events may force a parent to change vacation plans. When that happens, Stroble suggests that divorced parents do their best to accommodate each other.

"Both parents are usually entitled to vacation time with their children, so trying to deny that time together can be harmful to all parties, especially the children,” he says. “If parents can be reasonably flexible, then it works out best for everyone.”

If there can be no agreement reached on vacation plans, Stroble says a divorced parent should consult a family law attorney. He advises parents not to surrender vacation time with their children simply because the other parent is being too difficult.

“Vacations should remain fun times and important bonding opportunities in the parent-child relationship," Stroble says.

About The Stroble Law Firm, P.C.:
The Stroble Law Firm, P.C. is a full-service law firm based in Bloomfield Hills, MI, which represents family law clients throughout the state of Michigan, including Troy, Farmington Hills, Waterford, Rochester Hills, Southfield, West Bloomfield and Birmingham. The firm’s family law attorneys represent clients in claims involving child custody, divorce, spousal support, child support, parenting time (visitation) and property division. The firm’s practice areas also include personal injury litigation, business and commercial litigation, employment law and criminal defense.

To learn more about The Stroble Law Firm, P.C. call (248) 454-0800 or (888) 454-0801 or use the firm’s online contact form.

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