Airline pilots have amazing jobs that can take them all over the country, and in some cases, around the world. For many, this is the kind of career they have worked hard for and are eager to continue with.
After a divorce with children, though, having an irregular flight schedule could be problematic. It may be difficult to use a standard visitation template because many pilots won’t know their schedules months in advance.
As someone who is a pilot, something to consider is first talking to your employer about making a more regular schedule. For example, if you know that you’ll have to work for two weeks out of the month and fill in on one weekend, then you could plan around that if you had it set as a permanent schedule. You may opt not to have custody at those times at all, but then you could ask for custody during the two weeks when you’re scheduled off.
If adjusting to a more regular schedule isn’t possible, you may face arguments such as your schedule will disrupt your child or be too unstable for the other parent to plan. They may seek primary custody, which would potentially limit your time with your child. If you don’t want that to happen, it’s a good idea to sit down and talk about flexibility after doing what you can to get a schedule in place that is as stable as it can be.
If you are able to mediate, that can be helpful, but if not, make sure you prepare example schedules for a judge. Think through how you can be there for your child, so you can make a solid case for custody.