Many divorces involve the question of what will happen to the children of the splitting couple. Will the children divide their visitation time between the ex-spouses equally, will they spend more time with the other, or is one spouse even unfit to house the children at all? When these questions are in the hands of a Florida judge, expect these issues to be examined in light of what the child’s or children’s best interests are.
Many of the Sarasota clients that we here at The Law Office of Phillip J. Schipani, P.A. have worked with have found setting aside their emotions towards their ex-spouses in order to work together to create a parenting plan to be one of the most difficult elements of their divorces. With the pain associated with your breakup still fresh in both your minds, it may be easy to see why both you and your ex-spouse believe yourselves individually as being the better option to raise your kids. The law, however, has set its own standard on how custody should be determined.
If you share parenting duties with a person you are not in a relationship with, there is always the chance that person could suddenly refuse to allow you to see your children. While this is not necessarily a legal move under Florida law, it still happens.
If you are having a baby and are not married, you may wonder about your parental rights in Florida. Mothers and fathers need to be concerned because having the legal rights to a child is important to ensure you have the ability to raise and care for the child without interference from others.
It is not uncommon for people in Florida to marry someone who already has children. When this happens, that person becomes a stepparent. It is a difficult job to take on because it requires being an active part of a child's life, one whom the person may not know too well. Luckily, there have been many people who have taken on such a role and have offered some helpful advice to new stepparents.
If you are a parent and have recently gone through a Florida separation or divorce, you are probably trying to adjust to your new way of life while helping your child or children do the same. Dealing with familial transitions can prove difficult, and many children struggle through the process. At the Law Office of Philip J. Schipani, we understand what goes into transitioning children into life in two separate homes, and we have considerable experience helping families navigate this and other complications surrounding divorce.
If you are married when you give birth to a child in Florida, your current spouse is considered the other legal parent of the child. However, things get complicated if you are not married, even if you are in a committed relationship and your partner says he or she is the baby's other parent. The law does not immediately recognize that person as the other parent, so you must take steps to secure paternity or parental rights, in the case of a same sex marriage.
One of the biggest concerns of Florida couples considering divorce is their children and the custody and visitation arrangement that will go into effect once the divorce is final. If the parents themselves can come to a co-parenting agreement, this is the most preferable arrangement since it assures that the children will have continuing meaningful contact with both parents whom they love and trust. However, if parents cannot agree, a court will decide the custody arrangement for them.
Establishing a good visitation schedule can often be difficult, but you may encounter more challenges if your children are very young. As a Florida mom, you likely have many questions about the kind of visitation arrangement you should set up for your young children.
While most people in Florida would prefer post-marital arrangements to be completed once the judge declares them legally divorced, things can become more complicated when there are children involved. Child custody plans may be sufficient at the time of divorce, but can quickly become out-dated and incapable of handling your family's changing needs. This is especially true if jobs, relationships or other factors cause you to move away from your ex-spouse. We at The Law Office of Philip J. Schipani can help you determine how this move will affect your child custody plan and what you can do about it.