Christmas / Winter Break Parent-time in 2017

Christmas / Winter Break Parent-time in 2017

If you are following the standard Utah holiday schedule then in odd-numbered years like 2017 the “noncustodial” parent gets the first portion of the Christmas school vacation, including Christmas Eve and Christmas Day, until 1 p.m. on the day halfway through the holiday (if there are an odd number of days) or 7 p.m. (if there are an even number of days) so long as the entire holiday period is equally divided. The “custodial” parent gets the second half of the school break.

If you have a single child then the Christmas school vacation begins the evening the child is released from school for the holiday until the evening before the child returns to school. If you have multiple children however and their school schedules differ then it means the time beginning on the first evening all the children’s schools are released from the Christmas or winter break holiday and ends the evening before any of the children return to school so long as the entire vacation period is equally divided.

Isn’t it easy to figure out who gets what days and times? I did not think so either. The Christmas break is one of the trickier holidays when it comes to figure out what day the parents are supposed to exchange their child(ren). Much of this challenge stems from the fact schools do not all follow the same schedule. Nevertheless, this article will hopefully help you out:

For example, let’s use the traditional school year calendar of the 2017-2018 Jordan School District in Salt Lake County, Utah. You can find a copy here. It lists the winter recess as lasting from Friday, December 22, 2017 to Monday January 1, 2018 with school resuming Tuesday, January 2, 2018. For the purpose of calculating holiday parent-time you would start with Thursday, December 21 which is the day children get released from school for the holiday. The last day of the winter holiday would be Monday, January 1 because children resume school on Tuesday. Checking a calendar tells us there are 12 days in this holiday period – an even number. That means the noncustodial parent would get the children from Thursday, December 21 after school until Wednesday, December 26 at 7 p.m. and the custodial parent would get the children from December 26 at 7 p.m. until they resume school on January 2, 2018. (Note: this example is based upon the traditional calendar for the Jordan School District. If your children live in a different school district or follow a year-round schedule then your holiday period may be different. This example merely illustrates how to go about calculating what the holiday period would be).

Bear in mind special rules may apply if you live 150 miles or more apart or have children under age 5. (Under the standard out-of-state schedule the custodial parent gets the winter school break in odd-numbered years like 2017). Also, not every order follows the standard holiday schedule and if your order contains different rules then you should follow the specific rules in your court order.

Are you getting all the parent-time you deserve? Are you confused how to calculate Christmas break parent-time? Give the lawyers at Wiser & Wiser a call today at 855-254-2600. This is a special time of year yet unfortunately many parents (dads and moms) do not get to see their children because of interference from their co-parent. We fight to ensure our clients get to enjoy their parent-time rights.



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