When parents separate or get divorced, they frequently have difficulty cooperating with the other parent. The hostility between the parents can make every decision concerning children a battle. Frequently, this inability to cooperate results in litigation as the only resolution is a decision by a judge. A low cost and quicker alternative to litigation is a parent coordinator.
A parent coordinator is a third party who makes decisions concerning children when the parents can’t agree. It is a form of alternative dispute resolution but it is not created by state law. In Massachusetts, it is created by an agreement of the parties. In a written agreement, typically a divorce separation agreement, the parties spell out the powers of the PC and the rules by which the PC will function. The agreement is approved by a Judge and becomes an order of the Court. The agreement allows for either party to appeal a decision from the PC to a Judge. Usually, the PC has an initial interview with the parents and then resolves issues utilizing telephone calls and emails. While the PC charges by the hour, they usually charge less than an hour for most decisions.
Parent coordinators can help the parents make better decisions, save money, and eliminate stress. Consult an experienced family law attorney to incorporate PC provisions in your parenting agreement.