Mark Ashton, a partner in our Exton, Pennsylvania office, and a contributor the firm’s Pennsylvania Family Law blog, wrote an interesting post on that blog entitled "Is Parent Coordination for You?"

Parent Coordinators in New Jersey are nothing new and have been an arrow in the quiver of judges for years to address high conflict divorce cases. I have blogged about the use of parent coordinators and the use of other professionals to assist with custody and parenting issues in high conflict divorces before and they prove a use way to avoid litigation for issues that either require an immediate resolution and/or for issues that require some other way to address the complexities.  I recently had a parent coordinate involved overseeing things in a case where there were some serious mental health issues as to one of the parents, as well as medical issues related to a child.  The parent coordinator was able to gather and distill information and make recommendations.

Parent coordination is not a panacea and not a replacement for a judge.  Judges cannot abdicate their judicial decision making duty nor can they send enforcement issues to a PC.  In fact, that was something that the Appellate Division reiterated in my case of Parish v. Parish which was a reported decision (which we previously blogged about.)

In any event, Mark’s blog gives us another perspective of the types of issues you might want to use a PC for and some of the upsides and downsides of doing so.

One Response to Parent Coordination from a Pennsylvania Lawyer's Perspective

I just came out of a high conflict divorce and i think these parent coordinators sound like a great idea. My four children sufferred tremendously while there were long waits between motions. Most of which were done on paper with no oral argument. These decisions were based on a pile of lies while the children suffered. For example they went without health insurance , a year without child support and a waited around to be picked up for visitation 2 to 3 times a week for the noncustodial parent to never show. The emotional toll it took seemed to make the kids stop caring about things. Maybe that’s a reason a lot of troubled teens I see seem to come from divorce families. I’m not sure of the exact connection but I think this parent coordinator sounds like a great idea. this way the parent who is lying and playing games has an independent person who can look out for the children. Maybe this can stop the, he said, she said war and the children can benefit from this.

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