Parenting Time During The COVID-19 Pandemic – Final Part: What if my co-parent is an essential worker or front-line responder?

When you or your co-parent is an essential worker or front-line responder and you are being exposed to COVID, that does not mean you automatically lose your parenting time.

A lot of the issues with essential workers and front-line responders happen because there is a lot of what we like to call, “crystal ball language”; ex-spouses assuming a place is not safe for children because the other parent is a nurse or a doctor. You need to remember that you can’t look into the future. So, trying to withhold your child from your essential worker co-parent won’t end well. The courts are not giving any credence to that type of argument. It’s a non-winning argument.

You can’t control it all. We’ve seen people going to court to seek emergency relief because the child is in possession of a parent who is presenting flu like symptoms. They would say; “I need to have possession of my child immediately because the other parent has flu like symptoms.” Guess what? That’s not going to happen. Let’s say the other parent is having the flu or in fact COVID – 19, that means a child has been exposed. Plain, simple. That means that child needs to be quarantined for 14 days. So, no matter how you panic, you’re not going to be getting your child in that situation.

People tend to overreact to their ex-spouses more than they do with other people, try not to be short sighted. If you are scared for your child talk to your co-parent, remember that you child still wants to see their other parent they deserve time with them. Fighting over this might damage your child’s relationship with them. And above all DO NOT make your child scared of their other parent because of COVID-19.

We advise our clients to follow the CDC guidelines with regards to treatments and quarantining your children, and obviously letting your co-parent know exactly what’s going on and giving frequent updates, as well as coming up with a good strategy for safety measures that make you both feel comfortable, after all you both care about your child’s well-being.

If you need more information about your specific circumstances, you can schedule a Client Vision Meeting with our team

About the Author


John Nachlinger is a co-founder and managing attorney of Netsquire, a family law firm focused on streamlining divorces through effective mediation, settlement drafting, and court filing assistance. As a New Jersey Supreme Court Certified Matrimonial Law Attorney and Qualified Mediator, John guides couples toward equitable agreements without the cost and stress of litigation.

Recognized as a New Jersey Super Lawyer for over a decade, John’s client-focused approach aims to foster understanding during challenging transitions. With a background spanning top law journals, judicial clerkships, and boutique family law firms, John now applies his analytical skills to create workable solutions for all parties. His mediation services reshape the divorce journey by prioritizing compassion and compromise.

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