According to legal documents obtained by TMZ, Michael Strahan and his ex-wife, Jean Muggli Strahan, came to an agreement in February of this year to use a parenting coordinator, with Michael paying 90% of the associated costs. Now that the parenting coordinator is involved to help them co-parent better, they are arguing about the costs of parenting coordination. Michael argues that Jean is abusing the process and unnecessarily increasing the involvement of the parenting coordinator and the fees charged.
Not only did Jean try to back out of their agreement to have their daughters attend a school in North Carolina, she also behaved in an uncooperative manner when scheduling Michael’s parenting time with their daughters. Both instances, among others, required intervention by the parenting coordinator, who ultimately recommended that Michael and Jean split the costs of parenting coordination evenly. Jean has declined that arrangement and Michael is now looking to go to court to make Jean pay half the costs of parenting coordination, especially since he believes she is not acting in good faith.
In Ontario, parenting coordinators can be retained to assist parties that experience high levels of conflict with regards to custody and access. A parenting coordinator can help facilitate communication between the parties after they sign an agreement with respect to parenting.
When hiring a parenting coordinator, there is usually a parenting coordinator agreement that specifies the role of the parenting coordinator, the duration of the agreement, who pays for the parenting coordinator, and more. As parenting coordination is a form of arbitration, independent legal advice is required before you enter into a parenting coordinator agreement. As such, it is a good idea to talk to a lawyer to make sure you understand all the important details about the parenting coordination process.
In a situation like what Michael is going through, you would also want to make sure the clauses of the parenting coordinator agreement do not unduly burden one party with the costs of parenting coordination. This way, both parties will have an incentive to minimize the involvement of the parenting coordinator and the fees charged.
To learn more about your options during the parenting coordination process, contact us at Feldstein Family Law Group P.C. We can be reached online or via phone: (905) 581-7222.