Newfoundland & Labrador Parenting Time Schedules

A parenting time schedule tells you when a child should be with each of their parents.

Co-parents in Newfoundland and Labrador aren't required to have a parenting time schedule. If you get along well enough, you can have general parenting time instead and decide visits on a case-by-case basis.

If you agree on a schedule or want to propose one to the court on your own, write it into your parenting plan. Adding a visual calendar can help you better understand and present your schedule.

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Choosing the right schedule

When picking a schedule, you'll want to consider:

  • Your child's age
  • Your child's school and activities schedule
  • Distance between parents' homes
  • Parents' work schedules
  • Whether a third party will have regular visits (called contact) with the child

The schedule must be in the child's best interests, so prioritize your child while also accommodating parents' personal schedules.

Also, think about transitions, when the child goes from one parent's care to the other's. For example, if you live a considerable distance away from the other parent, exchanging the child every other day may not be feasible.

In your parenting plan, you can specify a location for transitions and allow parents to have proxies (e.g., grandparents) pick up and drop off the child.

Shared parenting time

It's common for each parent to have at least 40 percent of parenting time if they live within a commutable distance of one another. This arrangement is called shared parenting time.

The following are some examples of shared parenting time schedules that give parents 50/50 or 60/40 timeshare.

Alternating weeks (50/50)

With the alternating weeks schedule, the child spends one week at a time with each parent.

4-3 schedule (60/40)

The 4-3 schedule has your child spend four days of the week with one parent and three days with the other.

Primary parenting time

Courts prefer to award shared parenting time, but, when it's in the child's best interests, one parent gets more than 60 percent of parenting time. This arrangement is called primary parenting time. It's common for the other parent, called the access parent, to get a certain number of weekends and evenings each month.

You can add evening or overnight visits to increase the amount of time the access parent spends with the child, so long as it does not equal 40 percent or more of the child's time. The following schedules give the access parent 30 percent or 20 percent of time.

If it is not safe for the access parent to be alone with the child, the court may order supervised visitation.

Every weekend (70/30)

The every weekend schedule has the child spend every weekend with the access parent.

Alternating weekends (80/20)

The alternating weekends schedule has the child spend every other weekend with the access parent.

1st, 3rd, 5th weekends (80/20)

The 1st, 3rd, 5th weekends schedule places the child with the access parent the first, third and fifth weekends of the month. If the month does not have a fifth weekend, the child will just spend the first and third weekend with the access parent.


Making a holiday visitation schedule can spare you headaches later. It can also help you divide holiday time fairly between parents.

Even holiday scheduling decisions that seem simple, like Mother's Day and Father's Day, should be explained in writing to ensure there's no argument about who has the right to exercise the time.

For most holidays and special occasions, like the child's birthday, it's common for parents to alternate yearly.

When explaining your holiday schedule in your parenting plan, state that holidays override the regular visitation schedule. This means the time goes to the parent who has the holiday rather than the parent who has the time in the regular visitation schedule.

See ideas for Canadian holiday schedules for inspiration when scheduling those specific holidays.


Vacations with the child can be written into your schedule if you already know when you'll take them. More commonly, parents specify an amount of time they can use throughout the year — with proper notice.

You can limit vacation time to a certain time of the year, e.g. to your child's summer break.

The easiest way to make a schedule

If you're like most parents, creating a parenting time schedule will feel daunting. How do you address holidays, school breaks and birthdays while ensuring the schedule will work in the years to come?

The Custody X Change app makes it easy. First, click and drag in your colour-coded calendar.

Then watch as your choices automatically apply to future years and a full description appears in your Custody X Change parenting plan.

The combination of a visual and written schedule means your family will have no problem knowing who has the child when. Take advantage of Custody X Change to make your schedule as clear and thorough as can be.

Visualize your schedule. Get a written parenting plan. Calculate your parenting time.

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Explore examples of common schedules

Explore common schedules

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