Risks of Verbal Agreements
Again, cooperation and positive co-parenting are always encouraged. However, if push comes to shove, and you don’t have an order from the court that details parental responsibilities or otherwise provides a parenting schedule, you may be left holding the short end of the stick if relations sour between you and the other parent. As a result, the lack of a court order is risky business and it leaves both parents relatively unprotected.
A Better Way
Even if you and the other parent get along, there’s no reason to wait on getting a formal agreement approved by the court. In fact, it’s probably better than the two of you work together to reach a plan that works for both of you while you get along. That way, if something occurs in the future that leads to conflict between the two of you, you will both be protected. Even if a Court order is in place, the two of you can always later agree to modify parenting schedules or allow for other deviations should you so choose. The name of the game here is protection. A court order providing for parental responsibilities is much like a fire extinguisher — of course, you hope that there will never be a fire, but you’re certainly better off having one on hand just in case.