Indiana Shelter In Place | Co-Parenting During Coronavirus
Gov. Eric Holcomb has ordered, in a teleconference from Indianapolis on Friday, that the state’s stay-at-home order which restrains residents from leaving their homes other than for “essential” business – will be extended two weeks – through April 20.
The COVID-19 pandemic has taken the world by storm. From school and office closures to shuttered stores and wedding bans, there are many broad-reaching social restrictions from the disease. If you find yourself struggling with co-parenting during this time, contact us to connect with lawyers who know how to help you.
Co-parenting is challenging on its own, and the added stresses of the Indiana stay-at-home order can make things a bit more complicated. The new order comes with many restrictions, including the shut down of many businesses and schools and imposing limitations on permissible excursions outside the home. For other activities, however, such as co-parenting, permission may not be as apparent. If you have questions about how co-parenting works in a time of crisis, child custody lawyers in Indiana offer advice.
Many custody agreements revolve heavily around the child's typical school routine. But then what happens in a situation like COVID-19 where a child's school routine is suddenly interrupted? As mentioned previously, some municipalities are adhering to original custody routines as if a normal life schedule still exists. But if you'd prefer to make alternative arrangements that are more convenient, it helps to speak with a family law attorney about your situation.
An attorney can help you work through issues that become more complex with school closures, such as who the child gets to see during those extra hours when he or she would normally be at work. Sometimes, co-parenting individuals simply adjust a custody arrangement based on a weekend or summer schedule when school is not part of the visitation schedule.
Issues with co-parenting logistics may also arise when both parents live in separate states. This is especially problematic when one parent lives far away or in an area deemed to be high-risk.
Legally, your original custody order is not directly affected or changed by the COVID-19 National Emergency. That means the original custody remains effective unless it jeopardizes a child's health, safety, or well-being. If that's the case, you can contact a family law attorney Indiana to request an emergency temporary child custody order that adjusts the court order's original provisions to make co-parenting safer for all parties involved.
Arguably, the healthcare industry is one of the most commendable professions to be part of right now. However, it's also one of the most taxing. If your former spouse works in the healthcare industry, there are special considerations to keep in mind when planning your child custody arrangement. Another factor in the arrangement is that the spouse working in the healthcare industry may have been exposed to the COVID-19 virus, which then puts the child's health at risk. As with other aspects of navigating a COVID-19 agreement in the time of a healthcare crisis, you may find it most helpful to speak with your former partner first to determine if there's a mutually agreeable solution that you can work out. In some cases, both partners may agree to suspend the healthcare worker's right to see the child while the risk of coronavirus persists. If you can't find a mutually agreeable solution, a skilled family lawyer can help you work through underlying issues.
Some cities, such as San Francisco, have "shelter in place" orders. Sheltering in place is difficult enough for one individual, but how do you cope with managing a family in this time of crisis? Many aspects of daily life, or life as a co-parenting pair such as court appearances, may be suspended or interrupted at this time. If that's the case, a quick and easy solution may be to speak with your former spouse and work out a mutually agreeable solution, such as adjusting visitation schedules to equally and practically divide time, or even sacrifice one parent's time with a child with the understanding that it will be regained in the future. If you can't agree on terms for seeing a child during a shelter in place mandate, it's wise to contact an attorney for assistance and to ensure there are no legal complications with adjusting the child custody agreement.
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