(a) The court may appoint a parenting coordinator at any time during the proceedings of a child custody action involving minor children brought under Article 1 of this Chapter if all parties consent to the appointment. The parties may agree to limit the parenting coordinator's decision-making authority to specific issues or areas.
(b) The court may appoint a parenting coordinator without the consent of the parties upon entry of a custody order other than an ex parte order, or upon entry of a parenting plan only if the court also makes specific findings that the action is a high-conflict case, that the appointment of the parenting coordinator is in the best interests of any minor child in the case, and that the parties are able to pay for the cost of the parenting coordinator.
(c) The order appointing a parenting coordinator shall specify the issues the parenting coordinator is directed to assist the parties in resolving and deciding. The order may also incorporate any agreement regarding the role of the parenting coordinator made by the parties under subsection (a) of this section. The court shall give a copy of the appointment order to the parties prior to the appointment conference. Notwithstanding the appointment of a parenting coordinator, the court shall retain exclusive jurisdiction to determine fundamental issues of custody, visitation, and support, and the authority to exercise management and control of the case.
(d) The court shall select a parenting coordinator from a list maintained by the district court. Prior to the appointment conference, the court must complete and give to the parenting coordinator a referral form listing contact information for the parties and their attorneys, the court's findings in support of the appointment, and any agreement by the parties. (2005-228, s. 1.)
Last modified: March 23, 2014