Children can be affected deeply by a divorce and at Segarra & Associates, P.A., we understand that it is your goal to minimize the effects that your divorce has on your children and to create an environment in which they will thrive.
The State of Florida recognizes that often times, the best way to do this is to establish a consistent and constant relationship with both parents. Therefore, a timesharing schedule which is in the minor children's best interests should be set up for each parent to be able to preserve that relationship. Barring extraneous circumstances such as domestic violence, substance abuse or other situations in which the safety of the children would be compromised. It is essential that the children be allowed to spend sufficient time with each parent in order to maintain a positive relationship.
Pursuant to Florida Statutes Section 61.13 (3), for purposes of establishing or modifying parental responsibility and creating, developing, approving, or modifying a parenting plan, including a time-sharing schedule, which governs each parent's relationship with his or her minor child and the relationship between each parent with regard to his or her minor child, the best interest of the child shall be the primary consideration. When determining a timesharing schedule that is in the best interests of the child, a judge shall evaluate all of the Section 61.13 (3) factors affecting the welfare and interests of the particular minor child and the circumstances of that family, including, but not limited to:
- The demonstrated capacity and disposition of each parent to facilitate and encourage a close and continuing parent-child relationship, to honor the time-sharing schedule, and to be reasonable when changes are required.
- The anticipated division of parental responsibilities after the litigation, including the extent to which parental responsibilities will be delegated to third parties.
- The demonstrated capacity and disposition of each parent to determine, consider, and act upon the needs of the child as opposed to the needs or desires of the parent.
- The length of time the child has lived in a stable, satisfactory environment and the desirability of maintaining continuity.
- The geographic viability of the parenting plan, with special attention paid to the needs of school-age children and the amount of time to be spent traveling to effectuate the parenting plan. This factor does not create a presumption for or against relocation of either parent with a child.
- The moral fitness of the parents.
- The mental and physical health of the parents.
- The home, school, and community record of the child.
- The reasonable preference of the child, if the court deems the child to be of sufficient intelligence, understanding, and experience to express a preference.
- The demonstrated knowledge, capacity, and disposition of each parent to be informed of the circumstances of the minor child, including, but not limited to, the child's friends, teachers, medical care providers, daily activities, and favorite things.
- The demonstrated capacity and disposition of each parent to provide a consistent routine for the child, such as discipline, and daily schedules for homework, meals, and bedtime.
- The demonstrated capacity of each parent to communicate with and keep the other parent informed of issues and activities regarding the minor child, and the willingness of each parent to adopt a unified front on all major issues when dealing with the child.
- Evidence of domestic violence, sexual violence, child abuse, child abandonment, or child neglect, regardless of whether a prior or pending action relating to those issues has been brought. If the court accepts evidence of prior or pending actions regarding domestic violence, sexual violence, child abuse, child abandonment, or child neglect, the court must specifically acknowledge in writing that such evidence was considered when evaluating the best interests of the child.
- Evidence that either parent has knowingly provided false information to the court regarding any prior or pending action regarding domestic violence, sexual violence, child abuse, child abandonment, or child neglect.
- The particular parenting tasks customarily performed by each parent and the division of parental responsibilities before the institution of litigation and during the pending litigation, including the extent to which parenting responsibilities were undertaken by third parties.
- The demonstrated capacity and disposition of each parent to participate and be involved in the child's school and extracurricular activities.
- The demonstrated capacity and disposition of each parent to maintain an environment for the child which is free from substance abuse.
- The capacity and disposition of each parent to protect the child from the ongoing litigation as demonstrated by not discussing the litigation with the child, not sharing documents or electronic media related to the litigation with the child, and refraining from disparaging comments about the other parent to the child.
- The developmental stages and needs of the child and the demonstrated capacity and disposition of each parent to meet the child's developmental needs.
- Any other factor that is relevant to the determination of a specific parenting plan, including the time-sharing schedule.
Segarra & Associates, P.A. is a team of highly skilled yet compassionate professionals who practice exclusively in the area of family and matrimonial law. We understand the need for a well thought out and specific timesharing schedule to be set up as effectively as possible, and we can help you establish such a schedule within the Florida courts. Studies show that children who have a consistent and fair “time sharing” plan following a divorce have an easier time coping with the separation of their parents.
Contact us for a consultation regarding your visitation case. We are committed to giving your case our full attention and are available now to speak with you. Call us today. (305) 742-5042