Joint Child Custody
Concerned About Child Time-Sharing Arrangements? Contact The Virga Law Firm, P.A.
Determining child custody arrangements is emotional and can be even more frustrating without the counsel and support of a skilled family law attorney. Florida state family law determines custody using the legal standard of what is in the best interest of the child. While some aspects of what is in the best interest of a child can be difficult to quantify, there are general components to determine how custody will be shared between parents.
Have concerns about child custody arrangements? If you need a zealous advocate for your legal rights during a divorce, we can help. Contact The Virga Law Firm, P.A. today at (800) 822-5170.
What Is Shared Parental Responsibility?
“Child custody” is no longer a legal term in Florida. Since 2011, a new law changed the concept of custody into two subsidiary factors: parental time sharing and parental responsibility. Shared parental responsibility is the most common form, which is similar to the standard joint custody arrangement. Another form of shared parental responsibility is one which grants ultimate decision-making authority, where one parent is granted the right to make final decisions for the child.
How Time-Sharing Is Determined in Florida
A time-sharing schedule will determine how long each parent spends with a child, and their responsibilities for making decisions impacting the child’s life. Some of these decisions include choosing an educational path, out-of-school activities, and a family doctor. The legal terminology was changed, among other reasons, to reflect the court’s focus on the best interests of a child throughout the divorce process.
The best interest of a child is determined by these criteria, among others:
- Child’s education and school location: Uprooting a child from their school is a big adjustment for a child, so this is taken into account when custody is decided.
- Current and proposed living arrangements, and the ability of a child to adjust to a new situation: The existing living environment and any post-divorce arrangements will also be considered.
- Financial situation of parents: This also takes child support and employment factors into account.
- Physical and mental health of each parent: The child’s welfare is measured against the parent’s ability to care for their children while managing any chronic health conditions.
- Evidence of parental drug or alcohol abuse, or past domestic violence: A stable home environment for a child is one free of illicit drugs and alcohol abuse. Domestic violence is another critical consideration in determining which parent is better suited to raise children.
Our attorneys understand that determining child time sharing is mentally and emotionally exhausting. The Virga Law Firm, P.A. can help you accomplish your legal goals. Contact our legal team to schedule a consultation today.