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Manitoba Custody Schedules

What are the options for a shared care and control (custody) schedule?

There are several commonly used schedules in situations where parents are sharing care and control (or custody) of their child(ren) on an equal basis. The schedule you choose to use will be whatever works best for you and your family. Following are a few schedules that are most commonly used:

2-2-5-5

  Monday Tuesday Wednesday Thursday Friday Saturday Sunday
Week 1 Parent 1 Parent 1 Parent 2 Parent 2 Parent 1 Parent 1 Parent 1
Week 2 Parent 1 Parent 1 Parent 2 Parent 2 Parent 2 Parent 2 Parent 2

The 2-2-5-5 schedule is a very popular schedule, especially once your children are school age and enrolled in extra-curricular activities. The benefit of a 2-2-5-5 schedule is that each parent has two set weekdays that the children are in their care and the weekends alternate.

This allows the parents to schedule specific extra-curricular activities for the children on the evenings that the children are in their care.  It also gives the parents a consistent schedule to provide to their workplace.

2-2-3

  Monday Tuesday Wednesday Thursday Friday Saturday Sunday
Week 1 Parent 1 Parent 1 Parent 2 Parent 2 Parent 1 Parent 1 Parent 1
Week 2 Parent 2 Parent 2 Parent 1 Parent 1 Parent 2 Parent 2 Parent 2

Most commonly seen in situations where the children are still very young and it is too early for them to be away from either parent for a five-day period.  The 2-2-3 schedule is a popular schedule when children are under school age but is also used by many families with children of any age.  In this schedule, children never spend more than three days away from either parent. 

The parents alternate weekends and alternate the days of the week the children are in their care.  This means that if the children are enrolled in extra-curricular activities, the parents will both be responsible for ensuring the children are taken to all extra-curricular activities.

Week on/week off

  Monday Tuesday Wednesday Thursday Friday Saturday Sunday
Week 1 Parent 1 Parent 1 Parent 1 Parent 1 Parent 1 Parent 1 Parent 1
Week 2 Parent 2 Parent 2 Parent 2 Parent 2 Parent 2 Parent 2 Parent 2

Most commonly seen in older children, the week on week off schedule is a simple schedule where the children spend a week at a time with each parent.  Parents don’t often use this schedule until children are older as it can be hard for younger children to spend a full week away from either parent.

The week on week off schedule allows children and parents to settle into a routine for a full week rather than having frequent exchanges. A variation on the week on/week off schedule is to include a midweek overnight visit.  In each week on one weeknight the children would spend one night with the parent who doesn’t have custody of them that week. That way the children don’t go a full week without seeing one parent.

3-4-4-3

  Monday Tuesday Wednesday Thursday Friday Saturday Sunday
Week 1 Parent 1 Parent 1 Parent 1 Parent 2 Parent 2 Parent 2 Parent 2
Week 2 Parent 1 Parent 1 Parent 1 Parent 1 Parent 2 Parent 2 Parent 2

The 3-4-4-3 is a less commonly used schedule. If scheduled as above, it results in one parent always having care and control over weekends. However, as seen in the schedule below, the 3-4-4-3 schedule can be adjusted so that each parent has weekend time with the children.

The benefit of either version of the 3-4-4-3 schedule is that each parent has designated days, save for one day a week, that the children are in their care, which can make planning extra-curricular and other activities simpler.

  Monday Tuesday Wednesday Thursday Friday Saturday Sunday
Week 1 Parent 2 Parent 2 Parent 1 Parent 1 Parent 1 Parent 2 Parent 2
Week 2 Parent 2 Parent 2 Parent 1 Parent 1 Parent 1 Parent 1 Parent 2

There are many other possible schedules, if you and your family have irregular schedules or work shifts, then you may end up developing a schedule that works best for you as a family. It is always open to you to develop a different schedule that works best in your specific scenario.

If you would like advice on what may work best in your circumstance or for any other advice related to your separation or divorce please contact us today. Click here! For more information about custody and visitation related issues and to apply for a 30 minutes free consultation today.

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