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Bird's nest custody plans may work for some couples

Divorce with children is always difficult. It is difficult because if both parents wish to remain involved in their children's lives, it means the necessity of transferring the children back and forth between the parent's households.

It is difficult because of the continued contact necessary with the other parent. Splitting the children's time between the parents can also be expensive, having to duplicate bedrooms and additional clothing or other materials in the two homes.

Some parents have found another way to approach child custody. It is not for the faint of heart, as creates a completely new meaning to the phrase, the best interests of the children.

It is known as "bird's nest custody" and instead of the children shuttling between the parent's residences, the children remain in one home, and the two parents move in and out of the residence under the terms of their parenting plan.

A mother may be home Monday through Friday, and a father may stay during the weekend. Or they may change every three or four days.

Yes, it is complex, as the parents must work out many details; determining the home (do they keep the family home, who owns it and how do they finance it?) the children live in, how the parents will share their former bedroom and where the "away" parent will stay.

Other issues, such as the potential for future "new" spouses of the parents and how they would fit into this arrangement (and new children?) should be worked out as part of this process.

Financially, it is likely to be complex, and for some parents, it may include too much contact with their former spouse. Nevertheless, for the right couple, it may be an excellent way to separate with a minimum of trauma for the children.

Source: telegraph.co.uk, "'Bird’s nest custody': The smart new way to divorce," Radhika Sanghani, FEBRUARY 7, 2016

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