Custody over children is among the most contentious family law issues parents struggle with. Whether they are a divorcing couple, a divorced couple, or parents who had a child out of wedlock, many parents understandably have a very strong desire to spend as much time with their kids as possible. Courts in Pennsylvania, however, rarely award sole physical and legal custody to a parent. The result is a legal system that forces parents who likely already have an acrimonious relationship to co-parent.
Overcoming a contentious relationship in order to effectively co-parent a child can be difficult. For some couples, without help the co-parenting can be impossible. For this reason, I recommend that parents use co-parenting apps for their smartphone or computer.
Co-parenting apps and computer software are online programs designed to make managing a child’s life easier. These programs have features that allow the parents to easily communicate with one another. Information about schedules, pick-ups, money issues and much more can be easily inputted and sent to the other parent.
The other benefit to these programs is that any communication is admissible in court. By introducing such communications as evidence, if one parent in a custody dispute alleges the other parent is not cooperating or following a custody order there is now documentation to prove or disprove that claim. Such evidence is very beneficial in a dispute.
There are many co-parenting programs available to parents. The program I recommend the most is Our Family Wizard. There are numerous benefits to using this program. The software provides easy access to messages, calendars, expense spreadsheets, gps-logs to verify custody exchanges, and many other things. There is even an option to use a Tonemeter that helps you tone down anger in your messages for when parents truly cannot get along.
If you prefer a program other than Our Family Wizard, I highly recommend researching the various options available to you. They vary in terms of price and what services are provided. Thankfully, there are numerous sites that list and review the choices available so you can make the most informed choice for your family.
Yes, a court can require the parents to use a co-parenting app / program, but they are not required to. Usually, if a parent asks the court to include co-parenting software in the order the court will do so. A child custody attorney can help in such requests.
Attorney Lauren D’Alessandro specializes in family law and represents clients in Bucks County, Montgomery County, and Philadelphia County. Her office is located in Newtown and she invites you to schedule a consultation. You can contact her here. She looks forward to hearing from you!