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Family law: Alberta parenting coordinators help kids of divorce

Children of divorce don't have it easy, especially when their parents get so caught up in their own lives that they forget to parent. Registered parenting coordinators and arbitrators (RPCA), under family law, are an essential part of the divorce process in Alberta and can have a positive effect on the lives of children and their separating parents. RPCAs facilitate communication and cooperation between parents so they can effectively co-parent their kids.

The less stress on a child, the better. Children are often the ones who suffer the most in a divorce situation, and when they have both parents acting positively regarding their needs, children are more likely to heal from the pain of their parents' separation. An RPCA's assessment of each situation is with the children's best interests at the forefront.

An RPCA gathers information from the parents and other sources as necessary -- from schools, child care providers, counsellors, etc. -- and makes recommendations to parents which they must follow under family law guidelines. The RPCA and parents have the right to revisit issues in future and when additional information or documents become available. An RPCA can also divulge information to significant people in the children's lives, like teachers, doctors, dentists, visitation supervisors, etc., to ensure parents follow through on binding recommendations.

Alberta couples who have children and who are going through a divorce should consult a seasoned lawyer in family law. Such a lawyer will have not only the legal experience but also the concern for the welfare of children whose parents are separating. Part of a lawyer's advice may be whether an RPCA might help the situation for children.

Source: Alberta Family Mediation Society, "Registered Parenting Coordinator and Arbitrator", Accessed on July 23, 2017

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