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Violating the parenting plan is harmful to children

Creating a child custody plan can be easy enough for some Oregon parents, but creating a plan and then later adhering to it are two very different things. Parents usually agree that a parenting plan should always revolve around the best interests of their child or children. However, ensuring that both parents later respect the agreement and continue to agree about what is best for the children involved is not always straightforward.

One of the most common issues regarding a custody plan is the failure to adhere to the outlined parenting time. Unfortunately, some parents view court-approved agreements more as suggestions than as coherent plans to provide routines and stability in their children's lives. Parents who continually fail to show up for visitation or who are habitually hours or even days late compromise children's well-being and the other parents' ability to adequately plan around visitation time.

On the other side of this issue is the problem of alienation. This issue typically arises when parents are no longer on good terms with one another, and it can occur at virtually any time. Alienation involves one parent purposely keeping children from the other, withholding telephone calls, visitation and other agreed-upon privileges outlined in a custody agreement. Purposely cutting off access from an otherwise active and involved parent can be quite damaging for a child.

Divorce takes an emotional toll on both the parents and the involved children, and it can be understandably difficult for ex-spouses to maintain good feelings for one another. While it is certainly not necessary for Oregon parents to remain friends after separating, it is important for them to remain civil in order to continue caring for their children. This includes respecting the parenting plan created during their divorce.

Source: thesequitur.com, "Divorce Law 101: Common Child Visitation Problems", Mimi Aringo, May 16, 2016

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