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If we can't agree to custody schedule, does it automatically default to the standard parenting order in the divorce decree?

Cincinnati, OH |

My ex and I cannot agree on a custody schedule. We have joint custody of our son who is 7 years old. Within the divorce decree it states that if an agreement cannot be made, that the custody schedule will default to the standard parenting order that is stated in the decree. I have tried repeatedly to reach an agreement with my ex, but every time we agree to something she whittles the time down further and further. I've never had him for a holiday or been able to take him on vacation with me, even when he has expressed an interest to go. I am tired of not having time with my son. My requests have never been out of line- even less than what the standard parenting order is. She recently agreed to let him go on vacation but has now renegged because I wouldn't give up even more time with him.

Attorney Answers 6


  1. Yes. This is the exact reason that provision is there.

    For informational purposes only; not intended to, and does not, constitute legal advice or a legal opinion.


  2. If she is being that difficult, it may be better for you to just go with the terms of the standard parenting order as it determines how holidays and school breaks should be split up.


  3. I agree with Ms. Hoffman and Ms. Reams. Furthermore. If she is whittling the time to below what is provided in the Decree, (and if you are not getting holidays or vacation time that suggests to me this may be the case but I can't tell from your question) then you may want to make sure you understand the process seeking to hold her in contempt. Local Court Rules may set out the procedure for requesting vacation time and holiday time and you should be careful that you are complying with these. A lawyer can insure you understand fully your rights and the local rules and the procedure for contempt, should your situation warrant it.

    You can reach Martin D. Koop at (419) 447-2521 or martinkoop@martinkoop.com. Martin Koop is an attorney licensed to practice in the State of Ohio. Answering your questions does not create an attorney-client relationship between anybody and Martin D. Koop. You should speak with an attorney to whom you have provided all the facts in your case, before you take any actions or make any choices that may impact your legal rights. I am not obligated to answer subsequent emails or phone calls unless you have formally hired me. I wish you the best of luck with your legal matter.


  4. Yes, that is exactly why that provision is in there. Contact a local family law attorney if you are not being allowed the guideline "minimum" time.

    Responses provided are not intended to create, nor does it create an ongoing duty to respond to questions. The response is the educated opinion of the author and nothing should be construed as forming an attorney-client relationship. It should not be relied upon as legal advice. The response is based upon the limited facts and if additional or different facts exist, the response might possibly change. Attorney is licensed to practice law only in the State of Ohio. Responses are based solely on Ohio law unless stated otherwise.


  5. When an arrangement different than the standard parenting order is made, there is almost always a provision where it would fall back to the standard schedule. If she won't even follow that, my recommendation would be that you document, document, document and then file a motion for contempt. If you do so, the court will order her to comply with the decree, whatever is there. You should definitely get in touch with a good family attorney in town.

    I hope that this information is helpful to you. If so, please mark it as "helpful" or "best answer." The information provided here is general in nature and is not to be considered legal advice. No attorney-client relationship is intended nor created. As an Ohio attorney not licensed in any other jurisdiction, any information provided here is solely based on Ohio law and general legal principles. The information provided here should not be put into practice without specifically consulting an attorney in your jurisdiction. Do not proceed without first discussing this matter with your own local attorney.


  6. You need to hold her feet to the fire and present yourself for parenting time pursuant to the terms contained in your order. When she refuses, you file a contempt. You should also file for make up parenting time and request additional time.

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