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Could an alternative custody agreement work for you?

On Behalf of | Feb 21, 2024 | Divorce

No two marriages are equal, so why should divorces have cookie-cutter solutions?  Especially when it comes to the custody of minor children, it’s vital to get it right.

One type of custody that can be a viable choice to more traditional forms is bird’s nest parenting.

What all that entails

The name comes from the actions of male and female magpies after their eggs have hatched. The father and mother magpie take turns flying in and out of the nest protecting their hatchlings while the other parent forages for food.

In a similar manner, divorced spouses move into and out of the house during their parenting time with the kids.

Why you might want to try it

Primarily, it maintains continuity and stability for the children, as they continue to sleep in their own bedrooms, play with the neighborhood kids and remain in their same classrooms. That can mitigate some of the trauma that inevitably accompanies divorce.

Parents of special needs children sometimes choose this arrangement, as it prevents them from having to install wheelchair ramps, stair-climbing systems and other expensive equipment in another home.

Why it might not work

It can get costly, as unless you agree to live as roommates in an apartment or home during time away from the kids, the parents are essentially supporting three households. Also, once one parent moves on to a new relationship with another partner, it can get awkward sharing living spaces.

What you need to know

No Massachusetts family law court will impose this type of custody arrangement on divorcing spouses unless both are in full agreement. But consent judgments for this type of custody can be presented to the court to be signed and filed.

Learning more about the custody laws in the Commonwealth of Massachusetts can help you make the best decisions for you and your children.