Dispute Resolution should be a standard clause in a Parenting Plan. However, there are two provisions you should consider.
The first provision is the following:
Any disputes under this agreement shall go through mediation first. If the court finds that a parent has misused or frustrated the dispute resolution process without good reason, the court shall award attorney’s fees and financial sanctions to the other parent.
Note that this cannot prevent your ex from presenting you with a court summons—nothing can.
Note that this cannot prevent your ex from presenting you with a court summons—nothing can. Anyone can take anyone to court for any reason– but that doesn’t mean that they will win. So, if you have this language in your Parenting Plan and your ex has taken you to court anyway, you can say to the Judge that your ex made no attempt to resolve the issue with you through mediation first, as specified in your Parenting Plan, and therefore you request to be awarded reasonable Attorney’s fees for appearing today before the Court, and that the matter be referred to mediation.
The second provision is the following:
In any dispute resolution process, preference shall be given to what is already in the Parenting Plan.
What this language buys you is that if sometime in the future your ex tells you that the wording she had agreed to in the Parenting Plan was not what she intended, you can basically say “too bad…it is what it is”. This cannot prevent your ex from trying to change the Parenting Plan after the fact—nothing can, but this language will make it much less likely that she would be successful. The other parent would have to show compelling reasons to change the Agreement, such as that there has been a significant (and unanticipated) change in circumstances since the plan was first signed, and that there is demonstrable harm coming to the children because of this unanticipated change or because of an oversight that needs to be corrected, and, finally, that she has attempted to resolve the issue through mediation first. That sets up quite a hurdle.
If you do include this second clause, make absolutely sure that the Parenting Plan you sign addresses every future scenario and contingency you can think of, even if unlikely. This clause will work in both directions—against you trying to make a change—and could come back to bite you.