Your Child, Your Rights
In the State of Florida, the attorneys at Carolan Family Law Firm, P.A. located in Miami understand that when a couple is involved in the dissolution of their marriage proceeding, the most important issue is the well-being of their children.
If you were never married but birthed a child, then you will be required to enter into a Parenting Plan determining the timesharing arrangement, parental responsibility over major and daily issues, and activities, and child support.
When a couple divorces or separates it does not mean that either loses their parental rights. Furthermore, neither parents has superior rights over the other parent. Only in extreme circumstances would a parent be stripped of their Florida parental rights. For example, in cases that involved abuse or other dangers to a child.
Florida law recognizes that both the mother and the father play important roles in the lives of their children. The law also recognizes that it is important for both parents to be actively involved in their child’s life.
Parental Responsibility and Timesharing
The family law attorneys at The Carolan Family Law Firm, P.A. are well known, knowledgeable, skilled, and experienced in the area of family law and specifically children’s rights issues.
The state of Florida no longer refers to either parent as the “custodial parent” or grants “visitation rights.” We now create parenting plans that include timesharing arrangements. This is under the theory that both parents are entitled to enjoy meaningful relationships with their children.
In terms of issues related to divorce, parental responsibility, and timesharing, the Court will always take the best interest of the children into consideration.
If for some reason both parents cannot agree on a Parenting Plan, then the Court will determine a schedule and how the parties will share the daily tasks based on the best interest of the child.
The Court often grants shared responsibility, which means that both parents are responsible for bringing up their child together. The Shared Parental Responsibility statute basically states that all major decisions affecting a minor child shall be joint unless ordered by the Court.
If the acrimony between the parents is so terrible that they simply cannot share parental responsibility, then it may be deemed a detriment to the child for them to do so. In these cases, the Court may grant one parent sole parental responsibility or ultimate responsibility over all or certain issues.
Moral fitness is another factor the Court considers when making decisions surrounding parental responsibility and timesharing.
Children have rights, too! And child support is one of them!
Neither parent can waive the right to receive child support. Your children are entitled to support from BOTH parents. After spouses go through their divorce or separation, child support payments become an essential part of a child’s life. Child support, which is a major responsibility for parents, is implemented to ensure that the child has adequate health care, food, shelter, clothes and basic necessities along with access to educational opportunities, etc.
In the State of Florida, the court has specific guidelines concerning child support. The calculation is based on the parties’ respective incomes. All income sources are considered, such as salary, distributions, alimony, investment dividends, etc. The party who pays for aftercare or daycare receives a credit as does the party who covers the health insurance premiums. The number of overnight stays that each parent enjoys with their children is also used in the calculation and it has an effect on the parent’s obligation.
Once the amount of child support is determined, the parent providing the support will be given various choices on payment methods. One common method is opting to have child support payments automatically deducted from their paycheck and deposited into the bank account of the other parent.
Florida Parental Rights
As a parent who is going through a divorce or separation, it is important that you protect your rights in terms of having meaningful contact and developing a relationship with your child.
Contact The Carolan Family Law Firm, P.A. in Miami at (305) 358-2330 and schedule a consultation to discuss your Florida parental rights and the rights of your children.