Custody and Visitation

The Court in the State of Florida no longer uses the terms custody or visitation.  The current terms are “time sharing” and “parental responsibility.”

In most cases, the parents are awarded shared parental responsibility.  It is only under extreme circumstances that the Court will award sole parental responsibility to one parent over the other.  In addition, the majority of Parenting Plans or Time Sharing Agreements no longer give physical custody to the mother, leaving fathers with access to their children only a couple weekends each month. If you are a father, it is much more likely that you will have weekly time sharing with your child(ren).

When determining parental responsibility and time sharing issues, the Court will consider what is in the best interest of the child(ren).  Factors the Court uses in this determination include:

  • Demonstrated capacity and disposition of each parent to facilitate and encourage a close and continuing parent-child relationship, to abide by the time sharing schedule, and to be reasonable when changes are required
  • Demonstrated capacity and disposition of each parent to determine, consider and act upon the best interest of the child(ren)
  • The moral fitness of the parents
  • The mental and physical health of the parnets
  • Demonstrated capacity and disposition of each parent to provide and consistent routine for the child(ren)
  • Evidence of domestic violence, sexual violence, child abuse, child abandonment, or child neglect*

There are many ways in which time sharing can be arranged to accommodate a family’s needs.  Parties can agree to base time sharing schedules upon the parents’ work schedules, child(ren)’s school schedules and activities, or simply do week on/week off.  There are endless ways in which time sharing can be arranged, and we will help guide you

Litigation, enforcement, and modification

Sometimes it becomes necessary to enforce or modify an existing time sharing.  We can litigate your time sharing issues no matter how complex your case.  If the other parent is failing to comply with court ordered time sharing, we can enforce your Court order.  Or, if you have had a circumstances and need to modify your time sharing, we can file to have your time sharing modified.  Whatever your situation, we will guide you through the proper legal procedures to enforce or modify your time sharing to accommodate any changing circumstances in your life.

If you need help with a time sharing matter or are in need of legal counsel for another family law issue, I stand ready to assist you. Call my office at (321)728-2311 or contact me online to schedule a free initial consultation. I look forward to speaking with you.

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