The State of Florida has numerous laws in place to protect the best interests of the children involved in a divorce or in a paternity action. To do so, they ensure that each minor child has adequate and continuing contact with each parent after separation or divorce.
This helps encourage both parents to take an active role in raising their child, as well as ensure that one parent is not forced to handle the majority of parenting responsibilities. Parental responsibility and timesharing considerations are made equally, regardless of the age of parents or their gender.
At a minimum, parenting plans must outline specifics as to how each parent will take responsibility for their child(ren). Some provisions that may be included in your parenting plan are:
Parenting plans are designed to focus on the best interests of the child(ren) involved. The court will take into account a series of factors under Florida Statute 61.13 which include but are not limited to: parenting history and capacity to act upon the needs of the child(ren) as opposed to the needs or desire of the parent, the demonstrated capacity of each parent to facilitate and encourage a close and continuing relationship between the other parent and the child(ren), the moral fitness or the parents, the mental and physical health of the parents, history of abuse or domestic violence, drug use, and the preference of a child if the court determines that the child is of sufficient understanding, intelligence and experience to express a preference. The court will then assess the welfare of the child(ren) and how the time with each parent can affect that.
There are differences surrounding the shared responsibilities and custody rights between parents. The state of Florida recognizes both parents’ responsibilities in caring for the child(ren) but will often grant full custodial rights to one parent over the other after most divorces or legal separation situations.
However, in a Shared Parental Responsibility situation, both parents retain full parental rights and responsibilities of their minor child(ren). Therefore, both parents will make joint decisions that affect the child(ren).
Yes, there are instances where the court will grant one parent sole parental responsibility. This requires you to prove to the court that parental responsibility would be detrimental to the child (physically or emotionally).
Before a parenting plan and timesharing schedule can be established, both parties must attend a parenting course. If allegations of abuse are made or you are seeking sole responsibility, parenting classes and therapeutic sessions may be held separately so that court-appointed officials can assess each parent’s capacity to care for his or her child(ren).
While the courts must consider the best interests of the child(ren), you still have rights when establishing your parenting plan and timesharing schedule.
We can assist you with establishing a fair timesharing schedule, making special arrangements as required, and even assisting you with seeking sole custody of your child(ren) based on the circumstances of your case.
Some of the main areas we serve can be found below:
Contact the divorce lawyers Miami at Estevez-Pazos Law Firm, P.A. today for an initial consultation 305-717-7130. Serving Miami area from our offices at 135 San Lorenzo Avenue, Suite 650, Coral Gables, Florida 33146.