Separation is a difficult time for parents and their children. Some parents, particularly where the breakup was traumatic, find themselves in constant conflict with one another, long after separation and sometimes even after a trial. Parents in these situations often return to court many times.

What is parent coordination?

Parenting coordination is a child-focused, out of court dispute resolution process for separated families.

Parents can meet with a parenting coordinator for help with interpreting or following parts of their court order, family arbitration award, or separation agreement that are about parenting.

Parenting coordination is voluntary, unless the court orders parents to use parenting coordination services. Parents need to sign an agreement with the parenting coordinator for parenting coordination services, which agreement can engage the parenting coordinator for up to two years.

How does a parent coordinator help?

A parenting coordinator does not decide major things like custody or access. 

Parenting coordinators are trained to:

  • understand the needs of children
  • help each parent discuss their parenting issues
  • help parents to manage and keep children out of conflicts

If the parties to a dispute cannot agreement, a Parent Coordinator can decide for you. Their decision is based on information they get from the parents, professionals such as doctors, teachers, counsellors, etc., and, if needed, your child.

A parenting coordinator does not decide major things like custody or access.

They can decide issues like:

  • small changes to a parenting access plan such as vacations and holidays;
  • participation of the children in activities like ballet, hockey, and special events;
  • education, including any special needs such as tutoring;
  • children’s travel and passport arrangements;
  • how your children’s clothing and school items are moved between each parent’s homes;
  • temporary care of the children by someone other than a parent or guardian;
  • discipline of a child;
  • transportation and exchange of the children for parenting times;
  • any other matter agreed to between the parties.

Who can be a Parent Coordinator?

Some family law lawyers, social workers and other mental health professionals are trained to be parenting coordinators. 

Parenting coordinators must:

  • Have taken a 40-hour parenting coordination training
  • Belong to a professional organization
  • Have at least 5 years in a family-related practice
  • Taken family law training if the parent coordinator is not a lawyer
  • Understand high conflict family dynamics, and family violence dynamics

Are you looking for an out of court parent coordinator?
Choose KDK Out of Court Inc.

Our collaborative divorce lawyers work with experienced mediators, parenting coordinators, financial specialists, and other professionals you need to achieve a resolution.