The stay-at-home orders and travel restrictions associated with the Coronavirus pandemic have left many co-parents wondering about their obligations with respect to parenting time exchanges. The general rule is that time-sharing is expected to continue throughout this crisis, and exchanges fall under the exception made for travel required by court order. In fact, Governor Polis recently took time to specifically address this issue in a recent press conference.
However, each case is different, and there may very well be circumstances in which the best interests of the children justify temporary adjustments to the parenting schedule. For example, a period of isolation for parents or children may be required if there has been exposure to an individual who has tested positive, and school closures have left many essential workers scrambling to find child care. In such situations all efforts must be made to made to reach an accommodation with the other parent, and this is one area where skilled counsel can be of assistance – Taking unilateral action, such as refusing to complete an exchange, could expose a parent to sanction once the courts resume normal operations. It also is imperative to place the needs and welfare of the children first, even if that mean sacrificing time to the other parent in the short term. Time can always be made up, but the damage resulting from parental conflict or infection can be long-lasting.
If you have questions regarding the impact of the pandemic on your co-parenting situation, The Law Office of Alexandra White has attorneys standing by to discuss alternatives tailored to the needs of your family.