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  • Writer's pictureKristyn Carmichael

What is a Periodic Review?

If you have minor children and are seeking a divorce in Arizona, you will ultimately need to file a Parenting Plan. This Parenting Plan traditionally covers three (3) main topics - time with your children, decision making regarding your children, and children’s financial agreements. One agreement that is required in your Parenting Plan is a Periodic Review. But what is a Periodic Review?

A Periodic Review is the idea that you should review your Parenting Plan periodically to determine if it is still in the best interest of your children. This review can take place in a formal setting, such as mediation, or simply between parents. For example, some of my clients meet over coffee for their Periodic Review or handle it over email.

As a part of your Parenting Plan, you will agree to how frequently you will have your Periodic Review. The most common option is once a year. For those with very young children, I sometimes see parents with a review every 6 months, at least for a period of time until the children are older. For those with older children, they often will choose every two (2) years.

I always recommend that my clients not only dictate how frequently, i.e. once a year, that they have their review, but also in what month. This will prevent confusion and conflict over when the review will occur. It also prevents misunderstandings and differing interpretations of the timeline you selected.

Ultimately, if a big change happens in your or your child’s life that necessitates a time to talk about the Parenting Plan, you can communicate outside of the Periodic Review period. I always recommend that my clients schedule a mediation meeting if they are having difficulty communicating so that we can work through those issues rather than letting conflict grow.

Specifically having difficulties co-parenting? You may consider seeking out a co-parenting coach, like Karen Dorsey.

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