The Ohio Parenting Plan- What Should Be Included

Ohio Parenting Plan, Ohio Dissolution with Children, Ohio Divorce with Children, Ohio Child Support Guidelines

What an Ohio Parenting Plan should cover and include

Parents’ Rights

There are a number of rights which each parent has in an Ohio Parenting Plan:

  • The right to reasonable telephone contact with the children when they are with the other parent.
  • The right to be notified in case of an injury to or illness of the children.
  • The right to inspect and receive the children’s medical and dental records and the right to consult with any treating physician.
  • The right to consult with school officials and the right to inspect and receive  student records.
  • The right to receive copies of school reports and notices of school events and programs.
  • The right to attend and participate in parent-teacher conferences, school trips, school programs, and other school activities in which parents are invited to participate.
  • The right to attend and participate with the children in athletic programs and other extracurricular activities.

General Responsibilities

This says what the general responsibilities of parents are.  Each parent is to foster respect and affection between the children and the other parent.  Neither parent is to do anything to impair the children’s high regard for the other parent.

Medical Responsibilities

There are a number of things which are stated, but here are some:

  • The parents shall notify the other parent promptly if a child experiences a serious injury or illness, or receives treatment in an emergency room or hospital.
  • The parents shall consult with each other about the children’s medical care needs.
  • Parents have a right to know the necessity for treatment, proposed cost, and proposed payment schedule. Each parent may also secure an independent evaluation at his/her expense to determine the necessity for treatment.
  • If the parties cannot agree regarding a course of treatment, the residential parent’s decision shall control.
  • The parents shall provide the other with the names and telephone numbers of all health care providers for the children.

Parenting Time Schedule

This sets forth the schedule when the children will be with each parent.  It includes holidays, vacations and birthdays.


This says who is responsible for transportation of the children.  Sometimes each parent is responsible for transportation at the beginning of his/her parenting period.

Other times the person who does not have custody has the responsibility for transportation of the children to and from their home for parenting time with them.

Each parent is responsible for providing transportation for the children to and from school and activities during his/her parenting period.

Current Address and Telephone Number

Each parent gives their current address and telephone number to the other parent, and these are listed in the court papers.

Notices Required by State Law

Relocation Notice: This is a notice which is required to be filed with the Court when there is a change of residence.

Records Access Notice: This is a notice to the keeper of records that each parent is entitled to access to records of the children.

Day Care Access Notice: This is a notice to day care providers that each parent is entitled to access to a day care center.

School Activities Access Notice:  This is a notice in an Ohio Parenting Plan to school employees that each parent is entitled to access to school activities.

Medical Expenses and Health Insurance

The Ohio Parenting Plans says whether one, both or neither of the parents has health insurance coverage for the children at a reasonable cost.

It says how medical expenses which are not covered by insurance are to be divided. This can be in proportion to parent income, equally by the parents, or all by one parent.

The plan also includes other important information about medical records and expenses, including that each parent shall have access to all medical records of the children.

Child Support

The Ohio Parenting Plan says how much child support is paid per month by one parent (obigor) to the other (obligee) if there is private medical insurance coverage.  It also says how much child support is paid per month if there is no private medical insurance coverage.

If there is no private insurance coverage, there is what is known as cash medical support. If there is government insurance on the children then this amount goes to the government. If the income of the obligor is below a certain amount or if there is private medical insurance coverage, there is no cash medical.

There is a statement as to where and how child support is paid.

In the Parenting Plan it is stated whether the amount of child support is the same as the Ohio guidelines or deviates from the guidelines so that child support is more or less than the guidelines.  It also says the reason(s) for the deviation.

The Ohio Parenting Plan states what changes must be reported by parents and when and under what conditions child support ends.

Existing Child Support Orders

Sometimes there is already an Order for child support. This clause refers to the existing Order and gives instructions to the Child Support Enforcement Agency what to do.  Usually the dissolution or divorce sets all future child support and replaces the existing Order.  The old child support amount is either kept or is changed because of changes in the incomes or circumstances of parents.

Tax Exemptions

An Ohio Parenting Plan says who takes the income tax exemptions for the children. Sometimes this is given to one parent.  Sometimes parents split the exemptions with each parent taking certain children. Other times parents alternate by even and odd tax years who is going to the receive the exemptions.

Other Required Language

There is language as to the requirement that parents notify the Child Support Enforcement Agency of any changes in their address and other information.  This language must be in BOLD LETTERS.  (To see the required language, click here.)


The checklist for an Ohio Parenting Plan is a long one. It is advisable to retain an attorney to represent you or to have an attorney draw up the papers so that they are done properly.