The intersection of child custody and extracurricular activities

Part of any parent’s job description is ensuring his or her children turn into productive, well-adjusted, intelligent and happy adults. While there are many ways to accomplish this goal, enrolling your kids in extracurricular activities is likely to be effective. Of course, if you and your former spouse share custody of your children, the matter may cause some conflict. 

What happens if your ex-spouse enrolls your child in an extracurricular activity that interferes with your parenting time? Also, who pays for the possibly expensive costs of participating in groups, sports, hobbies or other activities? The answers to these and other questions probably depend on a few different factors. Nonetheless, you should understand both your situation and Colorado law to know how to manage the intersection of child custody and extracurricular activities. 

Review your custody order 

If you and your ex-spouse went through a collaborative divorce, you may have negotiated a settlement that specifically addresses extracurricular activities. Alternatively, your custody or divorce order may tell you how to deal with them. Therefore, you should review the documentation you have to see if it is instructive. If your order or agreement is silent, you and your former partner may have to negotiate both involvement and payment. 

Recognize your legal obligations 

If you pay child support, you may wonder if your support payments can fund extracurricular activities. When making custody determinations, judges in the Centennial State must consider the child’s standard of living and additional needs. With regard to child support, extracurricular activities may be necessary to maintain your son’s or daughter’s standard of living. Such activities may also have a connection to his or her education, which falls within the scope of child support. 

Even though extracurricular activities are likely to improve your young one’s childhood experience, you do not want them to cause family friction. Fortunately, by understanding your rights, obligations and options, you can likely reach an acceptable solution.