Many divorced parents in Salt Lake City and all across Utah follow the standard parent-time holiday schedule to avoid having to negotiate with the other parent to establish some non-standard holiday schedule on their own. If you are one of the many parents who follows the standard Utah parent-time holiday schedule, and you are wondering when will be your turn to spend the holidays with your child(ren), you have come to the right place.

We invited our Salt Lake City child custody lawyer from The Ault Firm to spell out a quick guide to the standard parent-time holiday schedule in Utah. Regardless of whether you have gotten divorced last week or a few years ago, holiday parent-time is always very confusing.

What to expect from your parent-time holiday schedule in 2018?

The vast majority of divorced parents in Utah agree to alternate holidays from parent to parent year after year so that each parent ends up with equal holiday time and everyone’s happy.

Utah divorce laws exist for a reason. The standard parent-time holiday schedule in Utah was established by lawmakers to bring consistency and allow parents to plan parent-time with their children in advance. However, our Salt Lake City divorce lawyer warns that your holiday parent-time schedule may deviate from the schedule listed below, which is why it is advised to either consult with an attorney or read your parenting time order.

The state guidelines will only apply if you do not have an individual parenting time plan or order in place. So what should you expect during the 2018 holiday season if you are following the standard parent-time holiday schedule in Utah?

Utah’s standard parent-time holiday schedule from December 21, 2018 through January 1, 2019

In even-numbered years like 2018, the custodial parent gets the first half of the child’s Christmas / winter break school vacation, including Christmas Eve and Christmas Day until 1pm on the day halfway through the holiday if there are an odd number of days or 7pm if there are an even number of days, but only as long as the entire holiday season is equally divided between each parent. The non-custodial parent gets the second half of the Christmas / winter break school vacation.

If you, as the custodial parent, and the non-custodial parent share only one child, then, under the standard parent-time holiday schedule, you get to have the child for the first portion of the holiday break the evening your child is released from school for the winter break. The non-custodial parent, meanwhile, gets to spend parenting time with the child from the second portion of the winter break until the evening before the child returns to school.

Christmas / winter break parent-time holiday schedule in 2018

If you and the other parent share not just one but multiple school-age children on different winter break schedules, then the children should remain together and can begin spending the winter break with their custodial parent from the evening all children are released from school for the holiday period. The non-custodial parent’s parent-time begins from the second half of the Christmas / winter break until the evening before any child returns to school.

For example, if you are a custodial parent following the standard parent-time holiday schedule in Utah, and the Christmas school break begins on December 21, 2018, and ends on January 1, 2019, then your parent-time begins from the evening of December 21 through December 26 at 7p.m. After that, it’s the non-custodial parent’s turn, and he or she will have to return the kids before January 1 at 7p.m.

If this sounds too confusing, let our child custody attorney Salt Lake City explain how the standard parent-time holiday schedule works in Utah in a consultation. Contact The Ault Law Firm today by calling at 801-539-9000.