Parenting Plan Mediation

Parenting plans include details on how parenting responsibilities and parenting time after separation or divorce will be divided to ensure all needs of the children are met. Parenting plans can be as detailed and specific as parties would like, and only mutually agreed upon criteria will be a part of the parenting plan. These plans dictate custody, holidays, communication, and extra-curricular activities as parents see fit.

Parenting plans may need modified from time to time as circumstances changes. As children age, parents may find that a previously agreed upon parenting plan is no longer meeting the best interest of their child or parents may agree to re-mediate at a given point, such as when their child enters school.

Whether mediating an initial parenting plan or mediating changes to an existing parenting plan, Iowa Mediation Center can help you create a parenting plan that meets the best interest of your children while ensuring provisions for parental success are in place.

What is in a Parenting Plan:

  • Mother's Day/Father's Day
  • Child(ren)'s Birthday/Parent Birthdays
  • Halloween, 4th of July,
  • School Breaks/Summer Break
  • Daycare/School/Babysitter
  • Attendance at school events or extra-curricular activities
  • Phone/Skype/Other Access
  • Legal Custody
  • Physical Custody
  • Special Events/Other Holidays
  • Parental Communication
  • Exchange of Children
  • Safety Concerns/Procedures
  • Anything Parents Would Like to Include

Why Should I Choose Mediation:

Parents who choose mediation over litigation are usually more satisfied with both the process and the results for a number of reasons:

  • Mediation gives the parents more control over the outcome. You decide together what solutions work best for your family, not the judge.
  • Parents may be more inclined to comply with agreements because they participated in creating the agreement and maintained control over the outcome.
  • Parents in mediation experience less relational strain because the element of a "winner" and a "loser" has been removed from the process. Mediation can help parties learn to communicate more effectively to avoid trouble down the road.
  • The collaborative process usually takes less time because the parents are working together to discover a mutually agreeable solution. Litigation involves each party "digging their heels in" which naturally results in a longer process with more negative impacts on the relationship.

Note: Prior to beginning mediation with the other parent, both parents must complete the Children in the Middle course.

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