Family Law Blog

How the Parent Coordinator Process Works

How the Parent Coordinator Process Works

Thinking of enlisting the services of a parenting coordinator?

A parenting coordinator offers a valuable route to resolving issues with a parenting plan without having to go back to court. Typically, a family lawyer or psychologist, this individual works with parents whenever disputes arise. If an agreement can’t be reached, the coordinator can make a binding decision, known as a determination, that must be followed by all parties.

An Experienced Professional

Since 2014, parenting coordinators must meet strict training and practice standards as laid out in the Family Law Act. They must have at least 10 years’ experience in a family-related field and embark on specific training in parenting coordination, mediation, family law, decision making, skills development and family violence. Before working with a parenting coordinator, it’s a good idea to ask for their qualifications and experience. At Westside Family Law, our team has years of experience in this field, making us your number one choice.

Isn’t it Just Mediation?

A common misconception surrounding parenting coordinators is that they are mediators. Mediation is designed to resolve disputes in the short-term. Parenting coordinators will work with parents over a longer term to find mutually beneficial solutions in an efficient and cost-effective way – all without resorting to the courts.

A parenting coordinator performs a vital role for divorced or separated parents whose relationship is rocky. They offer space for parents to have a healthy and constructive relationship with each other, rather than perpetuating conflicts that can affect children long-term.

How the Process Works

A parenting coordinator will meet with both parties, individually or together. They will listen to the concerns of both parties, will review the family situation via any pertinent documentation (court orders etc), before determining a course of action. This will usually involve the setting of specific goals for resolution of issues. The coordinator will follow up regularly with all parties to assist in reaching the goals, while meetings can be held down the line to review progress.

The parenting coordinator will remain involved as long as it’s deemed necessary. This typically depends on the progress being made and the complexities of the conflict. If the coordinator feels they cannot assist, or no progress is being made, they can terminate the agreement at any time. It is a partnership that requires good faith from all parties to proceed successfully.

If one party refuses to comply, the parenting coordinator may proceed in their absence.

Here to Help

Looking to work with a Parenting Coordinator? At Westside, we’ve helped countless clients with this process. Contact us and we’ll be happy to assist you.