Types of Parenting Plans

Types of parenting arrangements

Decision-Making Responsibility  – The decisions may relate to:

  • health
  • education
  • religion
  • other important matters in respect of the child

Sole decision-making responsibility If your separation agreement or a court order gives you sole decision-making responsibility of your children: you have the right to make important decisions about their care, education, religious instruction and welfare (unless the agreement or court order says otherwise); you don’t need to involve the other parent when making decisions (unless the agreement or court order says otherwise). Joint decision-making responsibility Parents who have joint decision-making responsibility for their children: share the right to make important decisions about their care and remain involved in making decisions about the children For joint decision-making responsibility to work, parents must be able to co-operate and communicate with each other even though they are not together. De facto decision-making responsibility De facto decision-making responsibility is when your children live with you, but you don’t have a legal decision-making responsibility arrangement. You have de facto decision-making responsibility if: you and your spouse (whether married or common law) live separate and apart and your children live with you full-time or your spouse has accepted an arrangement. It will be more difficult for you to enforce your decision-making responsibility rights if you do not have them clearly set out in a court order or agreement, especially if you and your spouse disagree on what the decision-making responsibility arrangements have been. Shared parenting time Parents who have shared parenting time share the amount of time spent with the child. Under the Child Support Guidelines, shared parenting time is where a child lives at least 40% of the time with each parent. Split parenting time Split parenting time is when parents have more than one child and each parent has one or more children living with them for most of the time.

If both parents agree on where their children will live, how often they will spend time with each parent and how decisions will be made, they can write a parenting plan. A parenting plan can outline things like when each parent will spend time with the children and who will make major decisions about the child. It can be an informal agreement between the two parents or form part of your separation agreement or court order. It’s important to know that if the parenting plan is an informal arrangement, it can be difficult to enforce. [ Justice Canada ]