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The holiday season is a joyous time for families, but for divorced parents in South Carolina, navigating custody arrangements during this time can be complex. At The Law Office of Sara Turner, we understand the importance of creating a positive environment for your child during the holidays. We will explore key considerations and strategies for divorced families in South Carolina, providing valuable insights into holiday custody arrangements. It is vital to have an agreement that addresses holidays even if you get along perfectly with your ex. Allow your agreement to serve as your roadmap. Taking a shortcut is not only destructive to planning in the future, but it takes away your child’s consistency.

School Closures and Extended Breaks in South Carolina:

Your agreement should outline how a holiday is defined. Your agreement should refer to a particular county’s school district calendar if your child is not in school full time. Keep in mind that you will be responsible for child care during your holiday time if you are working so it is important to plan ahead.

Court Orders or Agreements:

The first step is to review your court order or agreement. In South Carolina, these documents often include details about holiday visitation schedules, specifying where the child will be during each holiday and how the pick-up/drop-off is handled. While exchanges at school make sense for regular parenting time it may be easier for an exchange at the relinquishing party’s home during the holidays so your child has access to an extended overnight bag without having to bring it with them to school.

Communication and Flexibility:

Recognize the significance of the main day of celebration, whether it is Christmas, Hanukkah, or another cherished holiday, and explore effective strategies for planning custody arrangements that take into account extended family time. Embrace the flexibility of celebrating on a day that may not be the actual holiday. Also, keep in mind what you did when you were together and try to respect your child continuing on with that tradition when planning what day the exchange will be. With guidance from The Law Office of Sara Turner, learn the importance of effective communication between parents, and understand the benefits of creating a flexible schedule.


If one parent wants to deviate from the established schedule or plans to travel with the children during the holidays it is important to refer to your Agreement. Most agreements have a notice provision regarding leaving the State of South Carolina and requires the traveling parent to provide an itinerary or contact information. Be mindful of the dates of travel to not infringe on the other parent’s time. Travel during the holidays can be hectic and if you are supposed to return your child at 2 p.m. on Christmas Day be considerate to the other parent by planning for delays.

Child’s Best Interest:

If this is your first year living separately and you do not have a Court Order start the discussion early as to what arrangements make sense moving forward. Courts in South Carolina prioritize the best interests of the child when making decisions about custody and visitation. If parents can demonstrate that their proposed holiday arrangement is in the child’s best interest, it may be more likely to be accepted by the court. The team at The Law Office of Sara Turner is dedicated to helping you navigate the legal complexities, ensuring that your child’s well-being remains the top priority.

Enforcement of Court Orders in South Carolina:

If one parent fails to comply with a court-ordered holiday schedule, the other parent may seek legal remedies to enforce the court orders. In South Carolina, this could involve filing a Rule to Show Cause, which may not assist with this holiday season, but will hopefully prevent a parent from not complying in the future.

For divorced families navigating holiday custody in South Carolina, the season can still be a time of joy with thoughtful planning and the support of The Law Office of Sara Turner. As your trusted family law attorney, Sara Turner is committed to helping you navigate holiday custody challenges, ensuring a positive and memorable experience for your child. Your child’s memories about the holidays can still be special after you separate. Reach out to The Law Office of Sara Turner today for personalized legal guidance tailored to your unique situation and make this holiday season an stress-free one for your family.

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