Navigating a co-parenting relationship can be one of the most difficult endeavors for a parent. There are emotions surrounding every aspect of the relationship which may cause, loss of logic, control, and heightened disagreements. However, your Orlando Child Custody Attorney has compiled a list of technology apps that can aid in the co-parenting relationship and allow you to have some distance between you and your spouse, as well as provide you with a controlled environment to encourage a stable and healthy relationship for your child.
Coparently: Coparently is an app that allows each parent to share calendar appointments, track expenses, update contact information, and communicate effectively. This app first allows you to set up a shared and color coordinated calendar to display your parenting plan. It allows for you to enter extracurricular activities of the child for the other parent to be aware of as well as recognize any conflict issues of the custody arrangement, such as a pick up or drop off time conflicts. The app also allows for you to have communications over the app instead of face to face or over a telephone. This keeps communications professional and on topic, especially if noted under a certain calendar conflict. One of the biggest draws to this app is the ability to keep track of the shared expenses of the child. This may include summer camp fees, doctor bills, or extracurricular activities. It will note who originally made the payment, what percentage is owed by each parent and how much is paid by each and on what date payment was made or received. This allows for less conflict over, receipt of a bill or notice of such an expense and keeps all items in an organized and local format. You may also allow third party access to the app, such as babysitters, attorneys, and even children. However, you will need to place limits onto the access the child or others may have to certain functions of the app. For instance, only allowing the child to see the parenting schedule and where they will be on a certain date is necessary to remove them from the communications aspect or exchange of expenses. This useful app does come with a price of $99 per year, per parent, or $9.99 per month, per parent.
Our Family Wizard: Our Family Wizard is another commonly used tool for co-parents. Similar to Coparently, there is a shared calendar between parents designating the parenting schedule, appointments for the child such as doctor visits and extracurricular activities. When conflicts arise, you can request through the app, a Trade/Swap request and the other parent can approve or deny such a request or engage in communication regarding the conflict, all over the virtual platform. Further, the app provides the parents with a location to provide updated health insurance information for the child, doctor contacts, medical appointment reviews, or even babysitter contact information. All communications regarding the child can be made in messages within the app and can be documented for later retrieval if necessary. Parents may also journal on the app, the events they did with the child during their timesharing, add pictures, and log any pertinent details that the other parent may desire to know. Further, parents may check in at a specific location to notify the parent they are at the exchange place, or the doctor’s appointment, or extracurricular activity with the child. Finally, mutual expenses that require reimbursement are also recorded on the app with receipts, dates of the original payment and the date and amount of reimbursement required from the other parent. You may also add third parties and children to the app but once again, it is imperative to limit certain items to children and individuals. The cost of this app is an annual payment of $99 per parent.
CoParenter: CoParenter is one of the most comprehensive apps for co-parenting relationships. This app includes the shared parenting schedule calendar, expense tracking and reimbursement, designating location drop off and pick ups, allows check ins by parents to exchange areas, provides an information bank holding the health insurance information, doctor information, school contacts, babysitter information, tools for making decisions on day-to-day parenting choices like haircuts, diet, allowance, or use of technology and homework assignments for the child, and areas for journal logs, similar to the previously discussed apps. However, what makes CoParenter unique is its involvement of artificial intelligence and live third-party neutrals.
When engaging in messages or any form of communication over the app, virtual assistance will be involved. The main purpose of the artificial intelligence is to flag certain words or phrases in your messages to your co-parent in an attempt to deescalate the situation and provide for civil discussion among the parties. The app is designed to pick up on certain phrases, words, and even predict when conversations may be escalating beyond the necessary discussion. If flagged, the app will automatically prompt you and ask for second confirmation before sending a message that contains certain inflammatory language. This allows you time to think, and question if the message is what you intend to convey. Outside of the artificial intelligence feature, the app allows you to access the assistance of a live third party neutral into your discussions with your co-parent. Live mediators can aid in a resolution of a dispute and ensure both parties are reasonable and fair. Finally, all communications are managed within the app and can be exported to other parties, such as lawyers or courts if necessary. The cost of this technology is $12.99 per month, per parent or $119.99 per year, per parent. These payments come with two third party neutral mediations a month.
Talking Parents: The app of Talking Parents is specifically geared toward the communication between co-parents. This app is designed only to keep a record of the communication between co-parents that may be retrieved if evidence of these communications is required in a court proceeding. The app is free for download and use, however, in the event that your communications between yourself and the co-parent need to be retrieved a fee of $3.99 per download or $4.99 per month will be imposed. Therefore, this tool is mainly used by individuals who’s communications are generally hostile or unproductive, and having this tool as a set record, encourages more direct and systematic communications to be had between co-parents.
When navigating a co-parenting relationship, ask your Orlando Child Custody Attorney for advice on procuring healthy communication and relationship between you and your former partner. Review these different apps that may aid your relationship, and together determine which may be the best fit for you, your co-parent, and your child.
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