Parts of a Parenting Plan

Everyone needs to know what the new parenting arrangement will be and how it will work. The parenting plan is your opportunity to structure a schedule that defines your parenting roles and gives each parent a mix of childcare duties and fun time. Clarifying the details of the new arrangement minimizes the opportunity for conflicts caused by last minute decisions. The parenting plan also lets the children know what to expect and reassures them that both parents will continue to be part of their lives.

It is estimated that parents must make over 200 distinct decisions to craft a comprehensive parenting plan for their children after separation of the family. According to Missouri law, the basic areas listed below need to be addressed in court-ordered parenting plans. If either parent will not share in these duties, the parents must state the reason why in their plan.

I. Duties of Each Parent

  • Communication procedures between parents
  • Communicating school information
  • Communicating medical information
  • Sharing contact information

II. Decision-Making

  • Education arrangements for your child
  • Monitoring educational performance
  • Medical, dental and health care expenses
  • Selection of health care providers
  • Handling health care emergencies
  • Extra-curricular activities of child
  • Establishing a dispute resolution procedure

III. Residential Schedule

Residential time with each parent, including:

  • Weekday/weekend care
  • Holiday and vacation schedule
  • Special family observances
  • Procedure for addressing conflicts in schedule
  • Transportation arrangements

IV. Financial Responsibilities

  • Child support
  • Child care expenses
  • Educational expenses
  • Activity expenses
  • Health care insurance
  • Non-covered health care expenses
  • Special needs of child
  • Transportation expenses of child

Click here for Parenting Plan Guidelines, Form 14 Child Support Worksheet, and other Family Law information.