70 30 Custody Schedules by Age

70 30 custody schedules are a step up from the every other weekend schedule that many separated parents are familiar with. 70/30 custody means the non-custodial parent has their child 4 nights per fortnight on average, compared to 2-3 nights with every other weekend.

While a 70/30 split is not normally considered shared parenting, it is quite close. Where parents live reasonably close to one another and want to improve on every other weekend, 70/30 custody is well worth a look.

Let’s take a deeper look into this unique method and how you can apply it to maximize your current custody situation.

70/30 Custody Definition

70/30 custody by definition means that the primary custodial parent is responsible for the child 70 percent of the time while the non-custodial parent is responsible for the child 30 percent of the time. That works out to a 5:2 split in terms of nights each week or 10:4 on a fortnightly basis.

While there are many forms of shared parenting, the 70/30 method is generally not considered to be one of them. The non-custodial parent receives less than the minimum 35% share that is a common cut-off for shared parenting.

While it is true this method is less than a shared parenting setup, the child does still spend a significant amount of time with their non-custodial parent. In a practical sense, this can look like alternating weekends spent with their father or mother (depending on which parent has primary custody) plus one or two extra care days and visit times each fortnight.

Young Children: Best 70/30 Plan for Them

In the case of a young child, such as a toddler, care days can be twice a week such as a Saturday and Sunday (any day of the week is suitable). In addition, visit times can happen at any point in the week or weekend.

It is important for young children to have frequent visits such as during the week, every week, as well as weekend visits, every weekend. This ensures the young child feels nurtured and cared for by both parents.

In fact, the highest-rated 70/30 custody schedule for young children includes the following features for the non-custodial parent:

  • Overnight visits every Wednesday
  • Overnight stays each weekend, alternating between Saturday and Sunday.

Ensuring stability is extremely important for the child and this schedule satisfies that need. The child is never away from their custodial parent for more than one day and never away from their non-custodial parent for more than three days.

Please bear in mind this outline is not a “one size fits all.” There are other factors such as long distances, siblings and unique circumstances. This may alter the way the schedule is set up. The above example is simply what works best for most custody arrangements.

Growing Up: Allowing the Schedule to Grow With Them

As the child gets older, the schedule can become more flexible. Once the child reaches pre-teen and teen years, non-custodial care may be, for example, three nights a week on one weekend and only one night the following week.

An even allocation of nights between weeks is 100% normal and easier to manage. Whole weekends with each parent are simpler and involve less travel. Some cooperation between parents is, as usual, required to manage sports, regular activities, tutoring and social groups.

Timtab.com’s highest-rated 70/30 custody schedule for children of school age requires that changeovers happen during drop-offs and pick-ups for school. That way, no extra travel is required for the child beyond getting to and from school each day.