Ask A Lawyer: What Are The Terms Of “Vacation Time”?


Does "vacation time" only pertain to non-school summer time and major holidays?

Can a weekend day that is normally scheduled to the Mother become a vacation day for the Father if the Father gives ample notice (11 days) that he will be using that day as one of his alotted vacation days of the year?

Thank you.



Unless the laws or court decisions of your state define "vacation time", the terms of the divorce orders control how the vacation time and other visitation is determined.  Unfortunately, if your court orders where not carefully crafted, there may not be any provisions specifically addressing your issue.  You will need to have an experienced, qualified domestic relations attorney review all of your court orders in light of the laws and court rulings of your state to determine whether the above scenario is an option in your situation.

While it may not be possible to anticipate all visitation schedule issues, an experienced domestic relations firm or attorney will be familiar with many of the variables and concerns that arise in visitation schedules that may not be obvious in a visitation schedule proposal.   It is advisable to retain counsel to review visitation proposals before agreement or court hearing to review what the proposal does, and does not, provide.  Relying on "common-sense" or what appears to be the plain meaning of a visitation proposal is often the source of later conflict between the parties.




Richard Coffee is a Litigation Manager in the Belleville Illinois office of Cordell & Cordell. He is an experienced divorce attorney whose practice is devoted to domestic litigation. He is licensed in the State of Illinois and is admitted to practice law in the U.S. District Courts for Northern, Central and Southern Illinois.

Mr. Coffee has extensive domestic litigation trial experience representing clients in courts throughout Illinois on all aspects of domestic litigation, including the representation of clients who are current or retired military personnel with issues under the Soldiers and Sailors Civil Relief Act and the Uniformed Services Former Spouses’ Protection Act, clients involved in state court jurisdictional disputes due to the relocation of one or both parties from or to Illinois, and clients with government or private pension benefit valuation and division issues. 

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