Co-Parent Effectively With Our Family Wizard
For years I’ve recommended the Our Family Wizard app to clients. Now I’m pleased to promote their product to a larger audience. The Our Family Wizard app has helped several of my clients to co-parent effectively. From a divorced or separated parent’s perspective, the app makes it easy to stay organized, in control, and co-parent effectively. From my perspective as an attorney, the app is a valuable tool for organizing evidence for any future custody modification.
Below I’ll walk through some of Our Family Wizard’s features and how they can help you to co-parent effectively.
Features To Help You Co-Parent Effectively
Our Family Wizard built its business on its shared family calendar. Through this calendar, co-parents can easily see the parenting time schedule. Events and holidays can be added by either parent so the calendar is personalized to reflect your parenting schedule. Children can even be given access to view the calendar so they have no confusion about the schedule.
In this day and age, though, shared calendars can easily be created by other apps. The big benefit to the Our Family Wizard calendar is the ease with which it manages parenting time swaps. The app allows you to seamlessly and easily request and confirm parenting time trades with your co-parent.
Say the children’s grandparents are coming in for a weekend, but it’s the other parent’s time. Simply send a request through the Our Family Wizard app and the other parent can accept or deny the request. This removes the back and forth of e-mail and the name calling that parenting time trades requests can create.
These trade requests and whether they are accepted or declined remain documented and easily accessible. This can prove extremely valuable in any future custody actions. They allow you to easily show the judge if one parent is abusing trade requests or that a parent obstinately denies such requests.
After a custody case, communication between co-parents can become angry and caustic. This leads to a breakdown of the co-parenting dynamic, adding stress and tension on both the parents and the children. Having a third-party go-between can reduce this deterioration as parents aren’t communicating directly to each other. The Our Family Wizard acts as a neutral conduit, a message board, through which communication can flow.
The knowledge that communications will be stored forever on this neutral third-party app causes a psychological shift in the tone of communication. With the app watching as an overseer of communication, parties are on their best behavior. No longer are co-parents shooting off-the-hip bombastic e-mails and texts to one another. Instead, they are posting considered and thoughtful messages aimed at co-parenting effectively.
Our Family Wizard also offers a ToneMeter which is billed as an “emotional spell-check.” It analyzes draft communications and flags emotionally charged messages and includes suggestions of alternative language to help you co-parent effectively through your communications.
If custody begins to break-down and a custody modification or contempt action is necessary, all the communications are stored. You can easily access all messages and forward them to your attorney quickly and in an organized fashion. Nearly every party going through these custody and contempt actions have to dig through years of e-mails and texts to find the relevant communications. With this app, all communications are stored and may easily be accessed and downloaded, saving you and your attorney time – which, in attorney speak – is money.
I was sold on Our Family Wizard a few years ago when I learned about its expense log. In most custody situations, parents will share some of the children’s expenses in addition to regular child support. For example, one parent may pay 60% of the kids’ uninsured medical expenses while the other pays 40%. Or the parties may divide extracurricular expenses 50/50.
As a practitioner, hardly anything is more tedious than reconstructing three years’ worth of doctor bills, summer camp expenses, and soccer invoices. First, the initial invoice or bill has to be documented. Then the proof of payment must be located. Then the e-mail or text asking for reimbursement from the other parent has to be documented. And all of this then compiled into some reasonable method of consumption via spreadsheets and tabs.
All this effort, time, and expense is saved by using the Our Family Wizard Expense Log. You can categorize expenses in the Expense Log as well as register how much each parent is responsible for within each category. Our Family Wizard allows payments to be transmitted between parties using the app so that it tracks and logs who made what payment and on what date. This creates a clear and concise report in the event of any dispute and can save hundreds if not thousands on attorney’s fees, either by avoiding a contempt action altogether or by making any contempt action more efficient to present to the judge.
The Our Family Wizard app includes a journal in which you can record events, details, and thoughts throughout the day. These records can be made private or shared with other third-party individuals such as attorneys and therapists. Most practitioners recommend that parties keep journals, both during a divorce or custody action and after. Keeping a journal allows parties to process their emotions. It also creates a record of things that may become relevant or important well down the road when they otherwise may have been forgotten. These downloadable and printable journals can be a great resource for your attorney should you find yourself in a custody modification.
99.9% of custody orders require parents to share some base level of information regarding the children. Usually included are things like report cards, medical records, insurance cards, and the like. The Our Family Wizard app allows these documents to be uploaded and shared seamlessly.
How to Include in Your Custody Order
If you’re going through a divorce or custody case and believe that Our Family Wizard would help you co-parent effectively, include a requirement that it be used in the terms of your settlement agreement. If you have a litigated custody case that goes to trial, judges can require parties to use the app within the custody order itself.
You should include clear language that outlines how the app will be used such as whether it is required for expense reimbursement, whether all parenting time trade requests must go through the app, and how the expense of the app will be shared (usually with each party being responsible for their own subscription).
Even if you’ve already completed your divorce or custody case, you and your co-parent can still agree to use the Our Family Wizard app. The failure to do so just won’t be enforceable by the court – but, as an aside, what great evidence in a modification case – that your co-parent refuses to try potential solutions without being court ordered to do so.
The pricing is affordable for anyone not living on fried bologna sandwiches. A year’s subscription starts at only $99 per parent. This easily pays for itself if it helps you avoid costly contempt actions or custody modification actions. Moreover, if you find yourself in the midst of a contempt or custody modification action, the evidence stored and generated by Our Family Wizard may provide simple and highly effective evidence to help you prevail. They offer a 30 day, risk-free trial, so there’s nothing to lose.
I highly recommend the Our Family Wizard app to anyone facing a co-parenting situation. Co-parenting effectively often times simply means having less communication. Our Family Wizard provides a buffer through which essential communication can be transferred in a less charged environment than text, e-mail, or phone calls.
Even with the best co-parents, it provides an easy to use resource that helps co-parenting stay on-track and smooth. In the worst situations, it can not only ease tension and remove the one-on-one confrontations that lead to explosive incidents, but keeps a wealth of evidence stored and organized for easy retrieval if you must go back to court.
Click here to learn more about Our Family Wizard and how they can help you co-parent effectively.