Super Lawyers
Badge 2
Badge 3
Badge 5
Best Lawyers

Child custody and Halloween: Tips for the recently divorced

For many, Halloween in October marks the begin the of the holiday season. This upcoming holiday can provide an opportunity for the recently divorced to iron out their child custody arrangements before Thanksgiving and the Christmas season begin.

The following tips can help:

  • Review. Take a moment to look over the child custody agreement. Review the language of the agreement for a listing of holidays. Know the answers to the following: Did each parent choose specific holidays or an agreement where the child alternates holidays with each parent? Were holidays listed? Is Halloween even considered a holiday within your agreement?
  • Discuss. If the agreement is silent as to Halloween, consider discussing the arrangement with the other parent either on your own or with the aid of legal counsel. Once both parents agree, communicate the plans with the child.
  • Safety. For those who choose to trick or treat, review basic safety with the other parent. Car accidents involving children are twice as likely during Halloween. Remind children to cross the street with an adult.

Parents can also help increase the child’s safety by refraining from large masks or other costume accessories that can impede the child’s vision or pose a tripping hazard. Consider increasing the child’s visibility by adding reflective tape or glow sticks to the child’s costume.

It is also wise to have a plan in place to review the child’s trick or treat goods before allowing the child to consume anything. Although rare, tainted candy during the holidays that causes illness has occurred. This is easily avoided by disposing of anything homemade or with a damaged wrapper.