College and Co-Parenting

Tips from Divorce Attorney in Andover, MA


Although a finalized divorce may terminate your marriage, it doesn’t end your parenting duties. This is very true for your college-bound child.  Being a teenager can be difficult enough,college can be a wonderful time or it could be a burdensome time.  This is when your child may need your love, support, and guidance more than ever.  Here are some ideas to keep it together:

Share.  Share the college visits with your ex. If you are amicable with one another and are used to spending time together post-divorce, then take the college tours together so long as it is okay with your child.  Otherwise, decide which parent attends which college with your child.  After that, share your opinions on your child’s college choices and be sure to include your child’s preference in the final decision. If you have agreed to help pay for college but can’t afford your child’s school of choice, make it clear that you can contribute a portion of the funds but he or she needs to be responsible for the remainder.  Maybe you can create a financial plan between you and your ex spouse.

Contribute.  Each of you should try to contribute some time to the college process.  It could be as simple as helping your child fill out applications or adding your input to the essay portion. Don’t let the whole process fall on one parent’s shoulders.  Financial aid is another complex matter to tackle.  Is there a plan on making higher education more affordable for your child and your family?  This is a critical time to contribute all of your knowledge and expertise.  Even if your child thinks they know it all, they will definitely appreciate your life experiences coming to the table.

Be Fair.  Being divorced usually limits you or your spouse’s time with your child.  Having your child leave for college can create a wide range of emotions which can includeregret, fear, joy, pride, to name a few.  Your child is most likely feeling the same way, to at least a certain degree.  Don’t make your child feel guilty about his or her time back at home during school vacations and holidays. Work with your child and your ex-spouse to come up with a schedule that is fair to everyone.

Your child reaching the age of high school graduation and college enrollment is a life-changing transition for everyone involved. Keep communication open and be supportive throughout the process. If you are having issues finding the right balance with co-parenting and the finances involved, it may be smart to speak with a professional to assist in the situation.


Fernandez, Socci & Nieves Family Law, based in North Andover, MA, also serves West Boxford, MA and surrounding areas, including New Hampshire.  The law firm was recently recognized as a “Best Law Firm” from US. News & World Report for 2019, for 3 years in a row.  If you are considering divorce, or have other family law-related concerns such as child custody, mediation / arbitration, modifications, pre-nuptial / post-nuptial, and paternity matters, consider contacting Fernandez, Socci & Nieves Family Law.

For more information and to discuss your situation with an experienced divorce attorney serving in Andover, MA, please visit our website. To learn more about the U.S. News & World Report of Fernandez, Socci & Nieves Family Law, click here .

For a family law and divorce consultation in North Andover, MA, 
contact us at Fernandez, Socci & Nieves Family Law

(978) 681-5454 info@fsnfamilylaw.com

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