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"What is parallel parenting?"
This is a form of joint child custody. The advantage of this form of joint child custody is that the parents need not be able to communicate well about the children.
"How does parallel parenting work?"
Each parent is in charge of the decisions regarding the children when the children are in their care. There is a well-defined mechanism setting out how the important decisions in the children's lives are made.
"What are the advantages of parallel parenting?"
In the past, to defeat a claim for joint child custody, all one parent had to do was claim that the parents could not cooperate in raising their children. The parent could artificially generate small conflicts, and joint custody would be denied. Parallel parenting is possible even when the parents are unable to cooperate. This gives both parents the opportunity to be involved in their children's lives.
"How common is parallel parenting?"
It is becoming must more common. The first major case in which it was used was in 1997, and called Mol v. Mol. In this case, the judge stated that joint custody can even be appropriate where parents are openly hostile and uncooperative. Since then, judges have been more and more willing to order parallel parenting.