The Benefits of Hiring a Parenting Coordinator in Missouri: A Guide for Co-Parents
As a co-parent, navigating the complexities of shared custody can be challenging. It is not uncommon for disagreements and conflicts to arise when making decisions about child custody and visitation. One solution that may help to resolve these issues is to hire a parenting coordinator. In this article, I will provide a comprehensive guide to the benefits of hiring a parenting coordinator in Missouri, including what a parenting coordinator is, how they differ from a mediator, the legal aspects of parenting coordination, what to look for when choosing a parenting coordinator, how to work effectively with them, and tips for navigating the parenting coordination process in Missouri.
Introducing the Role of a Parenting Coordinator in Missouri
A parenting coordinator is a neutral third-party professional who is appointed by the court to help co-parents resolve disputes related to child custody and visitation. They are typically appointed when co-parents have a high-conflict relationship or struggle to make decisions about their children. The role of a parenting coordinator is to help co-parents communicate effectively and implement their parenting plan in a way that is in the best interests of the child.
A parenting coordinator can be an essential resource for co-parents struggling to communicate or make decisions about their children. They can provide a neutral perspective, help to de-escalate conflicts, and facilitate effective communication between co-parents. If parents are ultimately unable to agree on a particular issue, the Parenting Coordinator can make the decision and can do so much faster than the court would be able to. A Parenting Coordinator can also make decisions on items that the court cannot or will not decide. The goal of a parenting coordinator is to help co-parents work together in a way that is in the child’s best interests.
What Are the Benefits of Hiring a Parenting Coordinator?
There are many benefits to hiring a parenting coordinator in Missouri. Here are some of the most significant benefits:
One of the most significant benefits of hiring a parenting coordinator is that they can help to improve communication between co-parents. Effective communication is critical when it comes to making decisions about children, and a parenting coordinator can help to facilitate communication in a way that is constructive and productive.
Another significant benefit of hiring a parenting coordinator is that they can help to reduce conflict between co-parents. When co-parents are in conflict, it can be challenging to make decisions that are in the child’s best interests. A parenting coordinator can help to de-escalate conflicts and find solutions that work for everyone.
It can take months to obtain a court date; even then, cases may continue for many more months. Many decisions require a resolution right away and not six months or a year later. A parenting coordinator can make decisions very quickly. Depending on the situation and if it is an emergency or urgent, some decisions need to be made on the same day or within a few days. A Parenting Coordinator can assist in resolving issues that require a fast response that a court otherwise could not. If the matter is not an emergency, the Parenting Coordinator can still act much quicker than a court usually can. Most decisions can be resolved in days or weeks v. months or years in court.
Hiring a parenting coordinator can be a cost-effective way to resolve disputes related to child custody and visitation. Working with a parenting coordinator can be significantly less expensive than hiring attorneys and going through the court system.
How Does a Parenting Coordinator Differ From a Mediator?
A parenting coordinator and mediator are both professionals who can help co-parents resolve disputes related to child custody and visitation. However, there are some critical differences between the two.
A mediator is a neutral third-party who helps co-parents negotiate and reach a mutually agreeable solution. They do not have decision-making authority and cannot impose a resolution on the parties involved.
A parenting coordinator, on the other hand, is an arbitrator appointed by the court and has decision-making authority. They can make decisions related to child custody and visitation if the co-parents cannot agree. They can also help co-parents implement their parenting plan in a way that is in the best interests of the child.
Understanding the Legal Aspects of Parenting Coordination in Missouri
In Missouri, parenting coordination is an arbitration process that can only be ordered by the Court if the parties agree. The Missouri Arbitration Act and the Association of Family and Conciliation Courts (AFCC) provide detailed guidelines for parenting coordination, including the qualifications and responsibilities of parenting coordinators, the scope of their authority, and the process for appointing a parenting coordinator.
If parties have agreed to hire a Parenting Coordinator, they will review and execute a Parenting Coordinator order. The order will set forth all of the Parenting Coordinator’s authorities. Co-parents who are considering hiring a parenting coordinator should be aware of their legal rights and responsibilities. It is essential to work with a parenting coordinator knowledgeable about the laws and regulations related to parenting coordination in Missouri.
What to Look for When Choosing a Parenting Coordinator in Missouri
When choosing a parenting coordinator in Missouri, there are several factors to consider. Here are some essential things to look for:
Credentials and Experience
It is essential to choose a parenting coordinator with the credentials and experience to effectively perform their role. Look for a parenting coordinator who has completed specialized training in parenting coordination and has experience working with families in similar situations.
A parenting coordinator should have excellent communication skills and be able to communicate with both co-parents effectively. Look for a parenting coordinator who is a good listener, who can de-escalate conflicts, and who can facilitate productive communication.
It is important to choose a parenting coordinator who is available when needed. Look for a parenting coordinator who has a flexible schedule and who is willing to work with your schedule.
While cost should not be the only consideration when choosing a parenting coordinator, it is essential to choose a coordinator whom you can afford. Look for a parenting coordinator who is transparent about their fees and who offers a reasonable rate for their services.
How to Work Effectively With a Parenting Coordinator
Working effectively with a parenting coordinator requires communication, cooperation, and a willingness to compromise. Here are some tips for working effectively with a parenting coordinator:
Be Open and Honest
It is essential to be open and honest with your parenting coordinator. Share your concerns, needs, and preferences, and be willing to listen to the perspectives of the other co-parent.
Follow the Parenting Plan
The parenting plan developed by the court is legally binding, and both co-parents must follow it. Be sure to review the parenting plan carefully and follow it as closely as possible.
Effective communication is critical when working with a parenting coordinator. Be willing to listen to the other co-parent, express your needs and concerns clearly, and be open to finding solutions that work for everyone.
Provide the Parenting Coordinator with the information they may need to understand the disagreement, what you have done to resolve it so far, and what resolution you seek.
Tips for Co-Parents Navigating the Parenting Coordination Process
Navigating the parenting coordination process can be challenging, but there are several things that co-parents can do to make the process smoother. Here are some tips:
The parenting coordination process can take time, and it is essential to be patient. Remember that the goal is finding solutions that work for everyone, which takes time.
Stay Focused on the Child
When making decisions about child custody and visitation, staying focused on the child’s needs and well-being is essential. Keep the child’s best interests in mind when making decisions.
Stay Future Focused and Willing to Compromise
Focusing on the future will not only assist you with the Parenting Coordinator process but can also help you move forward positively with your co-parent for the benefit of your child.
Compromise is key when it comes to parenting coordination. Be willing to negotiate and find solutions that work for everyone.
Conclusion: Is Hiring a Parenting Coordinator Right for You?
Hiring a parenting coordinator can be an effective way to resolve disputes related to child custody and visitation. If you are a co-parent in Missouri struggling to communicate effectively or make decisions about your children, a parenting coordinator may be able to help. Consider the benefits of hiring a parenting coordinator and choose a coordinator with the credentials and experience to effectively perform their role. With the right parenting coordinator, co-parents can work together in a way that is in the child’s best interests.