Sometimes British Columbia parents are unable to agree on matters regarding the custody of their children. When this happens, the court could impose a parenting coordination order on the parents, making them meet with a parenting coordinator. However, not everyone understands what a parenting coordinator does.
A parenting coordinator assists parents in making parenting agreements, determining the conditions of contact with the children and other matters that need to be resolved in a parenting coordination order. The coordinator may achieve this by building harmony between the parents through the establishment of guidelines with respect to how the order is implemented and how the parents communicate. A parenting coordinator may also create strategies for resolving disagreements.
In addition, the coordinator has the power to make determinations with respect to the issues outlined in the order. The individual cannot make determinations with respect to matters that are not included in the order. Furthermore, when making determinations, the parenting coordinator is required to keep the child’s best interests in mind. All determinations must be put in writing and signed, and the court may enforce determinations that are filed. If there is evidence that the parenting coordinator made a mistake or did not act within the authority awarded, the court could set aside or change the determination. The authority awarded to the parenting coordinator ends two years after the order is made unless it is terminated or extended before that time.
Sometimes parents may decide to get help resolving disagreements on their own from individuals who have training in arbitrating and mediating parenting disputes. Some family law lawyers have training in this field and might be able to facilitate negotiations between parents.