During these unprecedented and unsettling times, parents who find themselves co-parenting with another parent who lives in a different household have many questions.
It is important to remember that parents always need to put their children’s best interest first. Parenting time schedules should remain in place pursuant to current court orders already entered in your particular case. Pursuant to Governor Holcomb’s Directive to Stay at Home, Executive Order 20-08, on March 23, 2020, parenting time exchanges may still occur between parents as it has been deemed “Essential Travel” according to Section 16(e) of the Executive Order. A copy of the Executive Order is available here. Parents should utilize their best efforts to maintain a child’s normal parenting time schedule while taking into account the work schedule of a parent who may still be working in an essential business or operation (Section 14) and the need to complete the children’s e-learning. If a parent becomes ill, consideration should also be given to parenting time schedule to ensure that illness is not spread. For parents who do exchanges of children, you should consider exchanging outside of the other parent’s home, while utilizing social distancing, or at a public place such as a grocery store that remains open during these times.
We all need to keep in mind that uncertain times like this raise fears in children as well as adults. It is more important now than ever that parents co-parent together to help calm children’s fears and re-assure them, ensure that children maintain quality contact with both parents, continue to provide necessary structure for children to continue their studies through e-learning and come together to get their family through this public health crisis.
If you have questions regarding Governor Holcomb’s Directive to Stay at Home issued on March 23, 2020 and how it might impact your parenting time or other marital circumstances please contact Cate, Terry & Gookins, LLC. We have attorneys available to answer your questions remotely during this time.