The coronavirus pandemic has created numerous tense child-rearing issues between divorced parents. With the Covid-19 vaccine now available to children age 12 and up, there’s new potential for conflict. Polls show that American parents are torn as to whether to give their kids the vaccine, and there’s no doubt that some divorced parents fiercely disagree as to the right approach. When both sides maintain that their stance is the best path to keeping kids healthy and safe, who gets to decide?
When parents divorce, they must come to an agreement about who has physical and legal custody of their children. Physical custody refers to where and with whom the children primarily live. Legal custody refers to parents having authority to make decisions for their children regarding major issues such as religious upbringing, education, and medical matters. Parents often have shared legal custody, which means that both parents have equal decision-making responsibility for their children. However, sometimes a parent may have sole legal custody and exclusive authority to make important decisions for the child, including whether to vaccinate them.