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Children's Sports / Extracurricular Activities

Kids these days are more active than ever before. Between increased school workloads, various after school clubs, extracurricular activities and sports, it’s astounding how busy (and often cluttered) children's lives have become. While all of these activities may look good on a college application or a job resume as the children get older, the fact is extracurriculars and sports are vital to providing children of any age some sense of normalcy as their parents go through a relationship breakup. These activities provide the children with opportunities to exercise, socialize with their peers, develop skills for themselves, and just to have plain old fun, away from any parental stresses.

As a parent going through a relationship break up, it is important to support the children in their pursuits, however this often becomes a point of disagreement as parents go through the family law process. For example, while in the midst of a divorce (or any relationship break up), one parent may not want a child to play a particular sport or engage in an extracurricular activity due to cost, loss of residential time, or for a variety of other reasons. Spelling out the particulars for children's participation in these activities can be successfully accomplished through effectively worded provisions of a Parenting Plan and Child Support Order.

Common Parenting Plan Considerations

  • Is the child's participation in a sport/activity something that is a "joint" decision that both parents decide upon, or can one parent simply sign the child up?

  • Has the child traditionally participated in this sport/activity, or have any desire to do so?

  • What are the consequences if practice, meetings or games occur on a parent's residential time?

Common Child Support Considerations

  • How will the sport/activity be paid for: proportionally based upon parent's income, equally, or just by one parent?

  • What if there are private training, travel , equipment, club fees, etc. beyond simply participating in the sport/activity, how are those costs allocated?

Providing your children with an outlet from your relationship breakup with the other parent is paramount to their adaptation and development during a very stressful time. However, as parents the child's participation should not be a point of disagreement with the other parent, a loss of residential time, nor break the bank. Discussing these concerns with an experienced family law attorney to establish provisions specific to your needs and the needs of your children is essential.

Family law litigation can be emotionally difficult and complex. Decisions made about each step of the litigation can affect you for many years. We have years of experience helping our clients with Committed Intimate Relationships and can help you through the process. Contact us today at (253) 838 – 3377 or email at, to talk about your situation.

Disclaimer: All materials provided on this website have been prepared by Bains Law Firm for general information purposes only and no representation is made as to their completeness or accuracy. Information on this website is not intended as legal advice, and may not be relied upon as such. Only an attorney who can review the unique facts of each case and apply them to the statutes, case law and court rules can provide legal advice. Nothing in this website shall be construed to create an attorney-client relationship.

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