Divorce, Child Custody, and the Holidays: South Florida Family Law Attorney Advises Clients to Approach Time Sharing with the Spirit of the Season

FORT LAUDERDALE, Fla., Dec. 9 /PRNewswire/ — Divorce, child custody and time sharing arrangements shouldn’t dampen the holiday spirit. In fact, the holidays should remain festive for families gathering and spending time together – even if the family has been split by divorce. Just plan ahead – and plan to cooperate.

“From Christmas to Hanukkah to Kwanzaa and even New Years, each family’s holiday traditions are different. The common thread is spending time together,” said Barry Finkel, a Fort Lauderdale, Florida, family law attorney. “As long as parents work together, the divorce settlement’s child custody or time sharing arrangement can be flexible enough to reflect and respect these differences and traditions.”

Follow these tips to ensure the children – and family – enjoy pleasant and memorable celebrations this holiday season:

  • Plan ahead. Parents should plan their holiday festivities as best as they can around their time-sharing schedule – always keeping in mind the best interests of the children.
  • Split the day. If the families traditionally celebrate Christmas day, split the day in half, with one parent getting Christmas morning one year, and afternoon / evening the next. The same should be applied for New Years.
  • Split the holidays. If parties celebrate Christmas Eve and Christmas Day, alternating them each year with the children allows each parent to celebrate with the children evenly.
  • Split the holidays, part II. With eight days, Hanukkah gives families eight opportunities to celebrate. Parents can have their main celebration on any day and arrange each year prior to the holiday how to split the days for religious celebrations and gift giving.
  • Accommodate out-of-town family. If one parent’s extended family has flown in for the holidays, the other parent can agree to relax time-sharing. While grandparents have no inherent rights regarding time-sharing, if they are in town, families can coordinate with one another regarding holiday time-sharing.
  • Travel time. It’s OK for one parent to make travel plans without the children if it is not his or her year for the holiday with the children.
  • Celebrate together. Ex-spouses can celebrate with one another and the children if it is an important family ritual – and the parents can get along.
  • Be mindful of the children – and traditions. Try to observe or maintain traditions important to the kids. Don’t ruin the holidays for them with unnecessary shuffling back and forth or tension between parties. Be flexible. Have fun.

“No hard and fast family law rules dictate how holidays should be handled,” Finkel said. “So long as there is no tension or fighting between the parties that would upset the children, celebrate the holidays and leave the children with smiles on their faces.”


The Law Firm of Barry I. Finkel P.A., is a Divorce and Family Law practice focused on serving the needs of the entire family. Established in Fort Lauderdale / Broward County, Florida, in 1983, the firm’s lawyers provide trusted matrimonial counsel to clients facing turbulent times and unsettling situations. Learn more at www.BFinkelPA.com.

Media Contact: Lauren Simo of Boardroom Communications, 954-370-8999 or lsimo@boardroompr.com for the Law Firm of Barry I. Finkel, P.A.

SOURCE The Law Firm of Barry I. Finkel P.A.

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