A parenting coordinator (PC) is a neutral third party, ideally a licensed mental health professional, selected jointly by the parties or appointed by the court that has jurisdiction over the divorce. The PC's role is to meet regularly with the parties to facilitate effective joint decision making, to advise and manage many of the complex parenting issues, to help negotiate and resolve issues of conflict, and to make recommendations.
The PC will help to negotiate highly contentious topics or areas of disagreement by working to identify core needs, values and interests and to align those individual interests with the needs of the family overall. The PC works to understand the needs of parents and children and assists in the formation of a parenting plan, specifically tailored to the unique family situation.
The parenting plan is a formal agreement concerning parenting time schedule and conditions, including vacation and holiday planning. It can also cover a wide range of other topics like where each parent can/can't go during their time with the child, certain conversation topics that are off limits, decisions governing medical care and education decisions, who can transport the child and many other issues related to the children's welfare and interest. An experienced PC listens, offers advice and assists parties to stay focused on the larger goal of their children's welfare.
However please remember; when working with a Parent Coordinator, the decision making authority remains in your hands. The PC’s role is only to help to ensure that the important decisions are made together, even in high conflict situations, so that they will be sustainable over the long-term.
“The only way to get the best of an argument is to avoid it.”~ Dale Carnegie