If you and your child’s other parent are no longer together and do not live in the same house, figuring out how to share parenting time can be challenging. You should create your schedule based on the best interests of your child to make sure that your child gets the physical, emotional, and financial support they need.
Here are a few potential child custody arrangements that may work for you and your spouse if you are sharing parenting time.
If you and your child’s other parent live close to each other, you may consider a schedule where the child has to move from your home to the parent’s other home every other week. Alternating days is typically not an option, as going back and forth between homes so frequently can cause the child to experience a lack of stability.
3-4-4-3 or 2-2-5-5
This schedule requires the child to move between houses every few days. For example, with 3-4-4-3, the child will spend three days at Parent A’s home and four days at Parent B’s home, then four days at Parent A’s home and three days at parent B’s home the following week. With 2-2-5-5, the child will spend two days at Parent A’s home and two days at Parent B’s home, then five days at Parent A’s home and five days at parent B’s home the following week.
With this option, the child will spend weekdays with one parent and weekends with other parent.
Joint child custody does not necessarily mean that each parent will have the child for 50 percent of the time. In fact, many parents who share custody agree to share time 60/40 or 75/25. There may also be one arrangement in place during the school year and one arrangement in place when the child is not in school. Older children may have more of a say in which arrangement they feel will work best for them.