Set out below are some practical tips for the many separated parents in this region who do not work 9 to 5, Monday to Friday. Rosters can vary from being one week on one week off to changing rosters with “pyjama days”. All roster workers still have an important role to play in the lives of their children.
Many roster workers spend more time with their children than parents who work a standard working week. The key to making it work is to build an arrangement around four main factors. Matters you should consider to help yourself:
The Family Law Act establishes that the best interests of the children are paramount. While it is important for children to have a meaningful relationship with each parent, in developing your proposal you must consider how this proposal is going to affect your children and what is in their best interests. If your children are continually going backwards and forwards they may struggle with this type of arrangement.
You need to ensure that the other parent stays informed as to your roster and any changes in your roster. Ensure that a written copy of your roster is provided to the other parent.
Most separated parents seek routine in the arrangements for their children when they separate. This helps them and their children plan their lives around the routine of whether the children are going to be with mum or dad. It is important that you try and identify a routine amount of time each week, fortnight or month that you can spend with your children where your roster permits. Give the other parent or your children a calendar which clearly marks on it when you are at work and when you are at home.
Things are going to need to change from time to time but if you limit changes when you are to spend time with the children as a result of work, or other reasons, you are going to increase your reliability to the other parent, your children and in the eyes of the court (where necessary). Give the other parent as much warning as possible of any changes to your roster, including providing them with a new roster or explaining any changes in writing.
Please do not hesitate to contact our office on (07) 4963 2000 or via the contact form below should you have any queries.
Family Law Accredited Specialist