Jacksonville Child Custody Lawyers
In Florida, the term custody is no longer used. Instead, barring certain special circumstances, parents are entitled to exercise time-sharing with their child. The parent who spends the most time with the child per year may be said to have majority time-sharing. This is distinguished from equal time-sharing, where the child spends an equal number of overnights with each parent. In addition to affecting the relationship of a parent with the child, time-sharing has a significant impact on the establishment of child support. (Please see the Child Support section on this website for further information regarding establishment and enforcement of child support.)
If time-sharing and/or parental responsibility are matters of dispute in your case, consult with our Jacksonville child custody attorneys who will fight for your rights.
In each case where time-sharing is an issue, the court will establish a parenting plan, delineating the time-sharing schedule and setting forth the rights and responsibilities of the parents in connection with their co-parenting of the child. The parenting plan will also contain provisions establishing parental responsibility, the authority of parents to make important decisions regarding the child, including religion, academics, and healthcare. Typically, a parenting plan will provide for joint or shared parental responsibility, but sole parental responsibility with regard to specific categories of decision-making may also be awarded. In establishing a parenting plan, the court must consider the best interest of the child in light of no fewer than twenty (20) separate factors, ranging from the demonstrated capacity of a parent to facilitate the relationship between the child and the other parent to the demonstrated capacity of a parent to provide for any developmental needs of the child. Under certain circumstances, the court may deny overnight timesharing or order supervised timesharing. Once established, a parenting plan may be modified on grounds of a material, unanticipated substantial change in circumstances and in light of the best interest of the child.
In any event, while the judge in your case knows the law, you will be responsible for presenting evidence in support of your position to the court in a coherent, organized, and legally acceptable manner. If time-sharing and/or parental responsibility are matters of dispute in your case, you should consult with an attorney experienced in family law litigation at Grigaltchik & Galustov, P.A., at (904) 701-7180, who will fight for your rights and help you obtain and present crucial evidence in support of your position to the court.