What Determines my Child Visitation Rights as a Father?
Divorce can be a trying time on families. Having to divide custody in a way that everyone agrees on can be difficult and may not always result in the best outcome. So how do you define your rights to custody and visitation as a father? In the state of Florida there’s several ways to do this.
Shared Parental Responsibility in a Florida divorce
The Florida court has two initial options when deciding parental responsibility. The first is Shared Parental Responsibility in which the court orders both parents to retain full parental rights and responsibilities. The parents must decide on major parental decisions together and the welfare of the child is determined by both parents. In Florida, Shared Parental Responsibility is the default decision as it is usually what is best for the child.
Sole Parental Responsibility in a Florida divorce
If parents cannot agree upon major decisions regarding their children, the court may give one parent Sole Parental Responsibility. The parent with the sole parental responsibility will be decided upon by the court to make the major decisions regarding the minor child. This option is always the exception in court and is only granted when one parent is unfit to share in the parenting of the child. If shared responsibility is detrimental to the child the court will rule to grant one parent Sole Parental Responsibility.
Rotating Custody in a Florida divorce
For parents who typically get along, Rotating Custody is another option in their divorce. This give both parents 50 percent custody but it is not favored by the courts. This option is usually preferred by parents because it reduces child support exposure. Child support laws in Florida take into account the amount of time the child spends with each parent.
If you would like to speak to a lawyer about your rights as a parent, contact us here.