Child Custody Attorney in Lake City
Helping ensure the best possible future for your children while protecting your parental rights
Whether you are divorcing or are unmarried but have a child with a partner with whom you are not or are no longer in a relationship, the primary concern is for your children’s well-being. The Florida courts hold that both parents should have a role in and responsibility for both the emotional and financial care of their children. Nonetheless, child support and child custody remain among the most contentious and impassioned issues when a couple decides to call it quits. The Lake City child custody lawyers at Robinson, Kennon & Kendron, P.A. have helped clients throughout North Central Florida create parenting plans that are in the best interests of the children as well as fair and reasonable for their clients. They also provide guidance in child support enforcement and modification matters.
The parenting plan: Recognizing the important role both parents play in their child’s development
Florida laws recently changed regarding custody changed to reflect the state legislature’s recognition of the critical role both parents play in their child’s upbringing and welfare. As part of that change, what used to be called child custody is now referred to as a parenting plan.
The experienced Lake City family law attorneys at Robinson, Kennon & Kendron, P.A. know that you may have many questions about creating the best possible parenting plan. They invite you to contact the law firm for a consultation. They have also provided answers to some of the most frequently asked Florida parenting plan questions that may help you prepare for a meeting with your child custody attorney in Lake City.
What issues are addressed in a parenting plan?
The three main areas that a parenting plan addresses are:
- Time sharing — not just the daily or weekly schedule, but also with whom the child will spend holidays and vacations
- Communication — how parents can reach their child when they are not living with them, and what restrictions will be in place
- Decision-making — while many day-to-day decisions are shared, which parent will have priority in making major decisions, especially when parents are in disagreement?
To which parent does the court award primary residential custody?
The Florida courts no longer award primary residential custody to one parent and visitation rights to the other parent. The system also no longer automatically favors the mother over the father. There may be “majority timesharing” and “equal timesharing.” The courts look at circumstances including moral fitness, mental and physical health and demonstrated capacity of each parent to provide a consistent routine, among others. The standard is what is in the best interests of the child.
What happens if I need to change the terms of the parenting plan?
If a parent experiences a “significant change in circumstances,” a parenting plan may be modified, or changed. A significant change is defined as one that is involuntary, substantial and permanent. Your Lake City divorce attorney at Robinson, Kennon & Kendron, P.A. can help you with parenting plan modifications.
What about child support?
Child support is determined by the court and is based on information supplied by both parents. Your Robinson, Kennon & Kendron attorney can help you with matters regarding child support modification or enforcement.