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How to share time with the kids this festive season

by | Dec 7, 2023 | Family Law

Various arrangements can be made to cater to your family’s individual needs and traditions over the Christmas period. If you do not currently have any agreed schedule in place outlining where the children will spend Christmas Eve, Christmas Day and Boxing Day then you might consider proposing one of the following options to the other parent:

  1. The 50/50 split arrangement – This arrangement is ideal for parents who live in relatively close proximity to each other and are both seeking to celebrate with the children each year. The agreement may be as follows:
  • That in 2023 the children spend time with Parent 1 from 10:00am on Christmas Eve until 2:00pm on Christmas Day. Then the children spend time with Parent 2 from 2:00pm on Christmas Day until 5:00pm on Boxing Day and each alternate year thereafter.
  • The above is then reversed in 2024 so Parent 1 would have the children for Christmas dinner and Boxing Day and Parent 2 would have the children for Christmas Eve and Christmas lunch.
  1. The alternating Christmas and New Year’s arrangement – This is essentially a trade between parents which can work well in circumstances where one/or both parents intend on traveling with the children to rural areas or inter-state on Christmas or New Years and therefore the days cannot be split in half due to travel time and proximity to the other parent. The agreement may be as follows:
  • That in 2023 the children spend time with Parent 1 from 10:00am on Christmas Eve until 5:00pm on Boxing Day and each alternate year thereafter.
  • That in 2023, the children spend time with Parent 2 from 10:00am on New Year’s Eve until 5:00pm on New Year’s Day and each alternate year thereafter.
  • The above is then reversed in 2024 so Parent 1 would have the children on New Year’s and Parent 2 would have the children on Christmas.
  1. The alternating Christmas and Easter arrangement – just like the above however the parents would alternate between having the children on Christmas and Easter each year.

It is important to make plans well ahead of time to avoid any last minute negotiations in the days leading up to the Christmas which may cause chaos and stress for all those involved.

If you a seeking some advice regarding parenting arrangements please contact our experienced Family Law team on (03) 9614 7111.