UPDATE TO SEPARATED AND DIVORCED CO-PARENTS – THE TEST YOU NEED TO MEET TO CHANGE THE EXISTING PARENTING ARRANGEMENTS DURING THE PANDEMIC – GENERAL CONCERN IS NOT ENOUGH
If any co-parent seeks to change the existing parenting arrangements arising from, or related to, COVID-19, the following test will be applied by the Family Court before the request will be considered:
 firstly, the co-parent must prove specific evidence or examples of behavior or plans by the other parent which are inconsistent with COVID-19 protocols;
 the co-parent responding to such an urgent motion will be required to provide specific and absolute reassurance that COVID-19 safety measures will be meticulously adhered to – including social distancing; use of disinfectants; compliance with public safety directives; etc.
 both parents will be required to provide very specific and realistic time-sharing proposals, which fully address all COVID-19 considerations, in a child-focused manner; and
 Family Court judges will likely take judicial notice of the fact that social distancing is now becoming both commonplace and accepted, given the number of public facilities which have now been closed.
General concern about exposure is insufficient.
This is a very good time for both custodial and access parents to spend time with their child at home – this is strongly recommended by the Family Court during this turbulent times.
No co-parent should attempt to take any tactical parenting advantage over the other co-parent related to the pandemic. The Family Court will be loathe to sanction any such conduct.
Guerin v. Guerin, March 31, 2020, FC-20-576
April 2nd, 2020
Posted in COVID-19