If you need help from an experienced and compassionate Central Florida Custody Attorney and Time Sharing Attorney in Orlando Florida, call the Jacobs Law Firm at (407) 335-8113. The notion behind the Florida parenting plan is that the litigants themselves have the opportunity, through mediation and otherwise (by private agreement with a parenting plan and or a marital settlement agreement), to construct a plan based on their unique work and family schedules. The Florida courts intentionally seek to allow the parties to a marital dissolution with minor children or paternity lawsuit to determine their own goals and course of action. In a sense, the Florida courts are magnanimous and understanding. After all, if Mom and Dad can resolve their issues by working together without the intervention of the court, everybody wins. The best interest of your child is likely best understood by YOU, the parents, and not an impartial observer with limited knowledge of your circumstances. Jonathan Jacobs is a family law attorney in Orlando FL.
Florida Parenting Plan Requirements
Florida Statute 61.13, which concerns timesharing and child support payments, clearly provides that there are certain minimum/baseline/foundational requirements that must be met before the court will approve a Florida parenting plan. The requirements of a Florida parenting plan are both fair and reasonable, and they make sense on a practical level. While I do recognize that divorce is an uncomfortable subject, if the parties are unable to come to terms on a parenting plan, they may find themselves shocked or surprised by the court’s level of involvement in their personal lives. Dismaying or not, the end result is generally in the best interest of the minor children involved. We have to give credit to the Florida Legislature and to the Florida courts because their position is based on a standard that quite simply cannot be argued against: that the best interests of the minor children must be met in order for the court to sign off on a parenting plan.
A Florida parenting plan must include the parties’ decision as to whether both parents will share responsibilities relating to raising their child (shared parental responsibility), or if one parent wants and obtains sole parental responsibility to make major decisions for the minor child.
The Florida Parenting Plan Requirements Include:
- The parents must inform the court in great detail about how they will raise their child(ren) (daily responsibilities, extracurricular activities, after-school care);
- The plan must demonstrate an understanding of the days, holidays, vacations, the time the parents will individually spend with the child (Mother’s Day, Father’s Day, birthdays, national holidays such as MLK and President’s Day, Christmas or Chanukkah, Thanksgiving, summer vacations, etc.);
- One or both parents must commit to making health care decisions for the child, and how health care will be apportioned financially between the parties;
- One or both parents will have control of the child’s schooling (school district placement, discipline, etc.);
- The Florida parenting plan must state the type of communication each parent will have with the child when it is not their time with the child (FaceTime, Skype, by cellphone, text messaging, or otherwise).
Attorney Jacobs is a Central Florida Custody Attorney, and a Time Sharing Attorney in Orlando Florida.
- As with most if not all Florida laws concerning minor children, a Florida parenting plan shall be in the best interests of the minor child. This phrase is a intentionally ambiguous because parental relationships with each other and with the minor children are unique to every family.
- Shared, not sole parental responsibility is favored. Shared means that both parents have the authority to make decisions regarding the minor child. These decisions may include health care, education, extra-curricular activities, tutoring, vacationing, etc. If you have any questions, please call a timesharing attorney Orlando Florida for more information.
Furthermore, both parents shall have the right to access their child’s medical and dental records, and even academic records, unless the court has expressly revoked their rights. If you have had your rights challenged, call the Jacobs Law Firm, timesharing attorney Orlando Florida to begin restoring and protecting your parental rights.