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The snow has melted. The rain finally stopped and the sun is shining (we hope). The pools will open soon.

The kids are almost out of school and will be free for the summer, causing the annual household chaos.

The last thing you want to think about is the next school year. After all, September seems so far away.

But, if you share custody of your child or children, now is the time to confirm future plans, parental obligations and payment responsibilities.

This is especially true if this last school year did not go as smoothly with your former spouse as you had hoped or expected.

Perhaps, for example, there were disputes about the payment or reimbursement for variable expenses such as school supplies, field trip expenses or extracurricular activities.

Or perhaps your child recently showed interest and promise in a new (and expensive) extracurricular activity. Who will take him or her there? And who will pay the costs?

Or maybe your child will be transitioning into middle or high school. Are both parents in agreement about what school is best for your child?

These negotiations and ultimate decisions do not happen overnight. In fact, they can be quite time consuming, and may require budgeting or advance payments. That is why it is important to start thinking about and planning for these matters now.

Hopefully, many issues can be resolved within any existing shared custody agreement. Sometimes, however, disputes regarding even these agreements arise.

Litigation, of course, is available as an unfortunate last result when discussions and negotiations fail. Aside from the financial and emotional cost, litigation is time-consuming, taking weeks or months before final orders are issued.

The best course is to come to an agreement. And now is the time to begin the process.

The attorneys at FOS can help you plan for the next school year so that you can start the fall with ease.