Putting Your Future First

Things to consider in a divorce with special needs children

On Behalf of | May 27, 2024 | Divorce

Divorce is a challenging process, and when it involves special needs children, it becomes even more complex.

You must consider several important factors to ensure the well-being of the children and a fair arrangement for both parents.

Custody and visitation arrangements

According to the CDC, the divorce rate in Colorado is 3.0 per 1,000 couples. Custody and visitation plans must prioritize the child’s needs. Parents should consider the child’s medical and educational requirements when planning custody. Children with special need require consistency. Parents should discuss how to manage medical appointments, therapies and other regular routines.

Medical and therapeutic care

Special needs children often require ongoing medical and therapeutic care. Parents must agree on how to share responsibilities and costs for these services. It is important to outline how to handle emergencies and who will make medical decisions. Both parents should have access to medical records and healthcare providers to ensure the child receives continuous care.

Education and special programs

Education for special needs children often involves an individualized education program. Parents need to collaborate to ensure that schools are meeting the child’s educational needs. Parents should make decisions about schooling with the child’s best interests in mind.

Financial considerations

Raising a child with special needs can be expensive. Parents should discuss and agree on how to manage costs. Child support agreements should reflect the additional financial burden. It is also wise to consider long-term financial planning, including savings for future care needs and establishing special needs trusts if necessary.

Emotional support and stability

Divorce can be emotionally challenging for children, especially those with special needs who may struggle with change. Parents should strive to provide emotional support and stability during this transition. Maintaining open and honest communication with the child and reinforcing their sense of security is important. Both parents should work together to minimize conflict and create a supportive environment.

A co-parenting plan

A clear and effective co-parenting plan is necessary for the well-being of special needs children. This plan should include guidelines for communication, decision-making and handling disputes. Parents should remain flexible and willing to adapt the plan as the child’s needs evolve.

Couples with children should always put them first, even when ending the marriage.