A well thought-out and thorough divorce settlement agreement can save you a lot of time and money. Leave out certain details and you may wind up spending your hard earned money in court battling over issues that could have been addressed in the final agreement. Getting it right the first time is key.
For example, few divorcing couples with young children think about what will happen when their children head off to college. How will those decisions be made? Will the children attend in-state or out-of-state, public or private schools? Who will pay for the tuition and other costs that come with the territory? Including sufficient details regarding your child’s college education in your divorce settlement agreement – no matter how far off it may be – can help you to avoid costly disagreements later.
Another area of potential disagreement involves children’s extracurricular activities which can be very expensive. If the parties and their respective attorneys include provisions for deciding on which extracurricular activities their child will participate in and how the expenses will be shared or reimbursed, it can prevent one parent from footing the entire bill or having to pursue a modification of child support in court later.
Of course when it comes to shared parenting agreements there are many issues to consider. How will transportation will work? Who will spend holidays and breaks with the kids? What notification will one parent get when the other plans to travel with kids out of town? Who will babysit young children – extended family? A parent’s roommate or new girlfriend or boyfriend? A daycare center? How will costs be covered? Agreements concerning custody should not only include specific details, but also provide a means for necessary and ongoing communication between parties so both parents can stay informed and have the ability to be part of the decision making process.