An experienced family law attorney should be your first call when you and your child’s other parent have either split or are enduring some other significant life change that is prompting one or both of you to seek a change in your child’s custody arrangements. An attorney will help you navigate the court system, create a parenting plan and help advocate for your child’s best interests.
However, some complex custody cases benefit from the aid of a parenting coordinator, in addition to an experienced attorney. Especially in cases where heated disputes have arisen to non-legal questions, such as how much television time a child is allowed and whether or not he must attend religious education classes, a parenting coordinator can be an excellent resource for you and your co-parent.
Parenting coordinators are usually used in high-conflict situations and can be directly helpful in creating and modifying parenting plans. Whereas attorneys will generally provide the framework for these documents, it is not always a good use of parents’ time and money to use their attorneys in negotiating every single aspect of these often complex agreements.
Parenting coordinators can be beneficial resources when every mutual decision feels like a struggle or an epic battle. It is often a good idea to ask your attorney’s opinion about whether or not a parenting coordinator would be a good fit for your situation and who some excellent local parenting coordinators are. Just like attorneys, you need to research and seek out a specific parenting coordinator who is right for you and your family, as not all of them will be.
Source: Huffington Post, “Signs It's Time to Engage a Parenting Coordinator,” Diane L. Danois, July 3, 2013