Everything You Need to Know About Child Custody in Jacksonville, FL

In Florida, divorcing or separated parents must settle their child custody disagreements through mediation on their own or in court during a trial. In either scenario, a court will assess any custody plan to see if it is in the best interests of the child.

Let’s take a look at the basics of child custody law in Florida.

What Happens in a Florida Child Custody Case?

The court in a Florida divorce or child custody case will take the children’s best interests into account when determining how much time will be shared by the parents. Mothers or fathers are not given any priority under Florida’s child custody laws when making custody decisions. Instead, the custody arrangement will be determined by the unique circumstances and facts of every case.

Understanding Parenting Time Sharing

Time spent with a child by a parent is referred to as “time sharing.” In Florida, a court will arrange the parents’ visitation and custody schedules with the child when deciding on a time-sharing parenting plan. In Florida, parents are allowed to share their time equally. However, a judge can give one parent far more time-sharing rights than the other. If there is proof of marital violence, child abuse, abandonment, or neglect, parents may lose their time-sharing or visiting rights.

Understanding Legal Parental Responsibility

Each parent has the authority to decide on a child’s behalf when it comes to important medical, educational, religious, or legal matters. Florida’s child custody rules encourage dual parenting. However, if joint parental responsibility would be damaging to the child’s well-being, a judge may grant one parent exclusive custody of the child.

What is a Parenting Plan?

According to Florida law, each parent must submit a proposed parenting schedule describing their respective time-sharing and parental obligations. If you and your spouse decide on a custody settlement, you can ask the court to approve a single parenting plan.

A parenting schedule, a custody timetable, the designated address for school registration and other activities, the plan for how parents will communicate with one another regarding the child, and the designated parent who will be in charge of healthcare and educational issues are the bare minimum that must be included in a plan for the court to approve it.

Do I Need a Jacksonville Family Law Lawyer in a Child Custody Case?

In Florida child custody disputes, a Jacksonville family law lawyer is not necessary but can be quite beneficial. A Jacksonville family lawyer may represent you in court and guide your case through the legal system. If court action is necessary, the judge will determine the case based on what is best for the children. The ideal situation would be to have followed all the steps and made a strong argument before the judge, and the assistance of an attorney can make this much easier.