How Much Information Do I Have to Give the Other Parent?
Co-parenting following a divorce or separation can be difficult. Keeping
the lines of communication open and productive with a former spouse or
partner is challenging, but parents always need to work together to share
information for the benefit of the child. It is important to have a firm
understanding of what kind of information and how much you are required
to share with the other parent.
In the vast majority of cases, parents share joint legal custody. This
means that both parents share in the major decision making process for
the child. Decisions about medical procedures, extra-curricular activities,
religion, and other big choices must be discussed and shared by the parents.
To that end, in situations involving joint custody, the parents are required
to share the information that is necessary to complete this. For example,
if the child requires a medical procedure, the parents need to share doctor
names, medical records, and appointment times in order to facilitate the
process. However, just because one parent has sole legal custody does
not mean the other parent has no right to information about the child.
Even though one parent has the legal right to make these big decisions,
the non-custodial parent will still have the right of access to records
such as medical records or school records. Sharing extra-curricular schedules,
parent teacher conference calendars, and other timetables that have important
events for the child also need to be shared, regardless of whether the
parents have joint legal custody.
Every detail of a child’s day to day life does not need to be shared
with the other parent, however. Information such as what you and your
child plan to do over the weekend, play dates, or birthday parties for
the child’s friend that you plan to attend does not have to be provided.
Other information must also be shared, even if it is not an issue requiring
a decision. Most common among these is the residence of the child. Barring
special circumstances such as a history of violence or harassing behavior,
the parents need to share the address of where they reside with the other
parent, and in fact this information is required to be included in the
final custody order.
We have experience in helping our clients understand the requirements
of their custody order and meeting their obligations. If you have questions
about what is required of you and the other parent pursuant to your custody order,
at (732) 529-6937 to discuss your case.