Like many states, Georgia requires divorcing couples with children to attend and complete a co-parenting seminar. This class is designed to assist parents with preparing their children for the divorce process, and it can have beneficial results for all involved.
It is understandable for parents—especially those who have dedicated much of their time to their children—to push back on the suggestion that they need parenting classes. However, it is helpful to remember that these co-parenting classes provide resources to help your minor child navigate a difficult or changing family situation. Our experienced family attorneys could answer any questions you have about this requirement.
Whether or not parenting seminars are required in a divorce case is decided on a county-by-county basis. While each county in the state makes its own decision, it is helpful to note that nearly all jurisdictions require some form of co-parenting classes before a divorce can be finalized.
Various consequences can come with refusing to attend court-ordered co-parenting classes. A judge could find you in contempt and issue a monetary fine. However, a more likely penalty is that they simply refuse to grant the divorce. In other cases, it might even impact the outcome of your custody case.
Co-parenting seminars are usually relied on by divorcing spouses. However, there are also times when the court might order parents to go through these classes outside of divorce proceedings. For example, this might include cases involving child support, visitation, or legitimation.
Co-parenting seminars can be valuable given the wide range of material they cover. Generally, these classes are focused on managing the emotional needs of children as they face the reality of their parents divorcing. This can be the most stressful time in a young person’s life, so the purpose of these classes is to give parents the tools to help manage their emotional health.
Many children have a lot of questions, and some of them will not be easy to answer. Co-parenting classes are designed to help parents learn how to work together to assure their children that they have not caused the breakup or done anything wrong.
Co-parenting classes can also give both spouses the tools they need to help manage grief. Grieving the loss of a family unit is normal, not only for any children of the marriage but also for the divorcing spouses as well. These meetings also usually involve practical advice on how to handle the basic aspect of parenting small children in separate households for the first time.
To give yourself and your children the best chance at thriving in the future, taking co-parenting classes as required by the courts may be necessary. Reach out today to discuss your options with a trusted member of our firm.