A divorce is approximately twice as challenging and complex (emotionally, financially, and logistically) when there are children from the marriage. Listed below are some of the most helpful resources for a divorce in Oregon with children.
Custody in Oregon
In Oregon, legal custody is distinct from the parenting time schedule, or where a child primarily lives. Legal custody in Oregon defines who is legally responsible and entitled to make the major decisions for a child, including health care, education, and religious training.
The AFCC website has great resources about custody, custody evaluations and parenting plans.
Child Support and Expenses
Divorcing parents with minor children are required to use the Oregon child support calculator and abide by the results unless there is a qualified reason to divert from the calculated support amount. The inputs include each parent’s gross monthly incomes, parenting time, health insurance costs and childcare expenses. In addition to child support, a mediator or attorneys can assist divorcing parents in establishing agreements for sharing expenses for school and extra-curricular activities, un-reimbursable health care costs, and other child-related expenses.
Parenting with your Ex (Co-Parenting)
Explore age-based considerations and examples of parenting schedules with Oregon’s Parenting Plan Guide. If your child is 3 and under, explore parenting time schedules and considerations for babies and toddlers.
While many parents use google docs or other on-line calendars to coordinate parenting schedules and medical appointments, another popular app is Our Family Wizard.
Conflict and Communication
As part of a divorce in Oregon with children, each parent will be required to participate in their county’s parent education class, aimed at helping protect children from parental conflict. Some counties have simultaneous classes for children. The class coordinators are also a good resource for local adult and child-oriented “divorce coping / support” groups.
Read the Children’s Bill of Rights in a Divorce. Consider printing it out and committing to it.
The best books on the subject (in my opinion):
- Mom’s House, Dad’s House by Isolini Ricci
- Joint Custody with a Jerk by Judy Corcoran and Julie A. Ross
- The Co-Parents’ Handbook: Raising Well-Adjusted, Resilient, and Resourceful Kids in a Two-Home Family from Little Ones to Young Adults by Karen Bonnell and Kristin Little
- The Dance of Connection: How to Talk to Someone When You’re Mad, Hurt, Scared, Frustrated, Insulted, Betrayed, or Desperate by Harriet Lerner
- Relationship Help: The Relationship Repair Game – A 78-card toolkit for transforming conflict, with inspiring original artwork.
Helping Children Cope with Divorce
Best book for parents: Dinosaurs Divorce: A Guide for Changing Families, by Laurie Krasny Brown and Marc Brown
Best book to read along book: It’s Not your Fault, Koko Bear by Vicki Lansky