A Parenting Coordinator, like the concept of nesting discussed in a previous blog, is a tool used more often in the mediation room than the courtroom. Yet, it is one that can make all the difference if there is contention surrounding the parenting of your children.
When you divorce with children. There is always the possibility of conflict. In fact, the more moving pieces in any divorce, statistically, the more likelihood that something will be contentious. You love your child more than anything. Because you do, you have strong emotional responses to all sorts of scenarios that come up, from schooling to sports, to clothing choices….let alone custody and support problems. A parenting coordinator is designed to keep you two out of court because they act as a neutral third party who knows the facts of your case and can guide you both in the most reasonable course of action.
Mediation is the first positive step that will create the least conflict. Let’s face it, the least conflict there is between you and your spouse, the better it is for your child. In the mediation setting, you will formulate a parenting plan. The goal of the parenting coordinator is implement this plan in a way that assists you two in forming healthy meaningful relationships with your child.
How do you know if you need a parenting coordinator? It is often hard to tell. Obviously, there are times when the contention is ubiquitous. There is no doubt that a couple could benefit from utilizing this tool. If you and your spouse are on the fence, I would examine your general conflict level. I would examine whether or not there has already been conflict about the children. However, do not discount your gut instinct.
Finally, if all else fails and you go to mediation and don’t think a parenting coordinator is necessary and then all of a sudden you are blindsided by shenanigans you couldn’t imagine…..it is not too late. You can always agree to bring in a parenting coordinator. They reduce conflict and litigation whether employed up front or after the fact.