Fighting with your Ex over Summer Camp or Extra-curricular activities? Here are some tips to help you avoid that.


Jamie L. Graham – 05/29/19

  1. Begin with your court order. Summer is approximately 10 weeks. Most parenting schedules in Texas include, at a minimum, 30 days for the non-custodial parent in addition to the first, third and fifth weekend of the month. This means that it is likely that Summer plans will overlap visitation time for both parties. As a result, these times should be clearly delineated in the court order or agreed to. Absent an agreement, the Court order controls. Some ways to minimize conflict over the Summer or extra-curricular activities would be to add language to the court order. For Summer, this might include stating in the Court order that the child or children will attend Summer camp each Summer during a specified block of time, the cost attributed to each parent and the level of contribution each parent must make in an effort to ensure the child or children’s attendance. For example, the language might state that one parent is ordered to make the necessary arrangements for the camp, while+ the other would be responsible for ensuring that they arrive safely at the camp site with bags in tow.

The same premise applies to extra-curricular activities. Many parents want to have their children participate in extra-curricular activities such as soccer, ballet, gymnastics, etc., but who determines which ones and pays for the cost of the child or children’s attendance? Again, the court order controls if there is no agreement. Language could be included in the order that would clearly delineate each parent’s role to ensure participation for their child. Many court orders include provisions that allow each parent to choose one extra-curricular activity per year at their cost or at a shared cost between the parents. This necessarily implies that each parent will ensure that the child shows up at the designated times and dates for practices, etc.

  1. Try to get an agreement. It’s common knowledge that extra-curricular activities and Summer camps are good for kids to promote teamwork, independence, etc. Of course, proper planning is necessary to make sure that the kids are able to participate. An agreement between parents would allow for the proper planning and budgeting for the cost of attendance. Unfortunately, many parents are unable to obtain an agreement and without the court order language, the child suffers.


  1. Modify your current order.You can seek relief from the Court to include the language described above or have a co-parenting facilitator appointed to assist both parents in coming to agreements to benefit the children. There are many benefits to having a co-parenting facilitator appointed by the Court. First, it keeps the parents away from the unknowns of the courtroom and encourages both parents’ participation and commitment to what is in the child’s best interest. Second, it allows parents to utilize a third party to hammer out issues that arise as they are trying to raise their children. Third, it may assist the court in future modifications if one parent in arbitrary and consistently refusing to come to agreements for the kids.

If you have questions about Summer visitation or extra-curricular activities in Texas, contact us – we can help.

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