A couple faces many challenges while going through a divorce.  Often, the challenges continue even after the divorce is over, especially if minor children were involved as part of the divorce proceedings.  More often than not, parents disagree on how to share parental responsibility and timeshare with their children.

Once upon a time, maybe when dinosaurs where still roaming in Florida, one parent would be appointed to be the custodial parent, and the other parent would see the children on a weekend or holiday.  Psychologists, over decades of research, determined that sole or primary custodial type of custody arrangements were detrimental to the upbringing of minor children.  As a result, Florida abolished the concept of custody, sole custody, or primary custody and enacted the Shared Parental Responsibility Act.  The Act introduced the concept of shared parental responsibility, timesharing schedules, and parenting plan taking into consideration the BEST INTEREST OF THE MINOR CHILD.

A Parenting Plan is required in all cases involving minor child(ren).  Fla. Stat. § 61.046 subsection (14) defines “Parenting plan” as “a document created to govern the relationship between the parents relating to decisions that must be made regarding the minor child and must contain a time-sharing schedule for the parents and child. The issues concerning the minor child may include, but are not limited to, the child’s education, health care, and physical, social, and emotional well-being. In creating the plan, all circumstances between the parents, including their historic relationship, domestic violence, and other factors must be taken into consideration.”

Fla. Stat. § 61.046 subsection (17) defines “Shared parental responsibility” as “a court-ordered relationship in which both parents retain full parental rights and responsibilities with respect to their child and in which both parents confer with each other so that major decisions affecting the welfare of the child will be determined jointly.”

Fla. Stat. § 61.046 subsection (23) defines “Time-sharing schedule” as a timetable that must be included in the parenting plan that specifies the time, including overnights and holidays, that a minor child will spend with each parent. The time-sharing schedule shall be: (a) Developed and agreed to by the parents of a minor child and approved by the court; or (b) Established by the court if the parents cannot agree or if their agreed-upon schedule is not approved by the court.”

Understanding your options when it comes to making decisions regarding your children’s wellbeing is a stressful task for parents that Seff & Capizzi Law Group takes seriously.   If you and your former spouse are unable to reach a mutually agreeable parenting plan or need assistance with creating or modifying a parenting plan and time-sharing schedule, please call us at (954) 920-9220. We have over 40 years of combined experience and offer a free consultation.  Click here for more information about our family law practice and how Seff & Capizzi can help.