In August every year, family lawyers are flooded with phone calls from parents who cannot agree with each other on which school little Johnny should attend, starting that month.  They ask the me to file an emergency motion so a judge can decide.

The problem is, this is not considered an emergency, so one of two things will end up happening:  Either the parents will take Johnny to the school of their own respective choice on their own respective parenting days, thereby totally inappropriately involving this poor child in the conflict, OR the holdout parent will win.  Neither of these is a good solution.

Sure, you can still try filing something with the Court at the last minute.  But you have a better chance of getting struck by lightning in a house you won from Publisher’s Clearinghouse than getting in front of a judge in time.

Judges don’t typically consider this issue an emergency.  In Family Court, an emergency usually means child endangerment.  And while your child may be in emotional danger due to this disagreement, it’s probably not enough.

The best thing you can do is figure this out in advance – at least a year before Johnny will start school.  Start having the conversation with the ex today.  If you reach an agreement, then do this:  1) get it in writing and 2) file the agreement with the court.  If you can’t agree and you need a judge to decide this for you, file a motion or petition (whichever the case may be for you) AT LEAST by September the year before (which, depending on the county where you live, may still be too late).