November 13, 2016
By: Christopher A. Pearsall, RI Divorce and Family Law Lawyer
Can parents request vacation time/days with the child if they have no intentions of going on a vacation?
My court order allows each parent to take up to 2 weeks of vacation time each year. My son father has asked to take the last 2 weeks of the year because he hasn't used the "vacation time" yet. Aren't vacation times used to take the child on vacation. He has told me he doesn't plan on going anywhere but wants to use it before he loses it. The real issue is that Christmas is in this time frame and he has told me that he will not allow me to have our son for my holiday since the order doesn't state that holidays precede vacations. Is this something that I need spelled out in the order?
If a court order allows for "vacation time" it generally means a time for relaxation or recreation. While people often use the word "vacation" colloquially to mean to travel somewhere I agree with the first answer given by my brother attorney. Unless it is specified in a court order that the vacation time referred to MUST be time that is spent away from one's home then it is unlikely that a judge would find that vacation time has to be spent taking one's children somewhere other than his or her home. Regrettably, an order should normally state that parenting time on major holidays takes precedence over weekly parenting time and vacations.
Yes, it is something that you need spelled out in the Court Order to prevent issues now and in the future.