When you are involved in a child custody dispute, whether in a divorce or paternity action, it is natural to be concerned about the stability and future of your parent-child relationship. Many parents fear that they will be saddled with a parental time-sharing schedule that will erode the quality of their parent-child relationship. Constructing the parameters of a parental time-sharing schedule is a fundamental part of developing a parenting plan in Florida, which typically addresses all relevant matters regarding parental rights and obligations in a Florida child custody dispute.
Fighting to Preserve Your Parent-Child Relationship by Implementing Practical Parental Time-Sharing Schedules
Naturally, parents who are going through a divorce in West Palm Beach, or elsewhere, may be extremely concerned about the process of obtaining an acceptable time sharing arrangement. Mr. Cunha and his legal team strive to achieve an amicable parenting plan with a parental time sharing schedule that provides for parenting time which our clients find desirable and is in the best interest of their children. When the other parent is not cooperative or an amicable agreement cannot be reached our attorneys are prepared to zealously advocate for a parental time sharing schedule that is practical for you and your children.
The goal of a Florida child custody case is to derive a parenting plan that establishing the rights and obligations of both parents including a residential schedule that defines where the children will reside. The parental time sharing schedule defined by the parenting plan may be established through an agreement reached by alternate dispute resolution including direct negotiation, mediation, arbitration or the collaborative divorce process. If the parents cannot agree to a child time-share schedule for the children, the court will impose a parenting plan including a parental time sharing schedule based on the “best interest of the child” standard. In Palm Beach County, the family courts may turn to the “Model Parental Time Sharing Schedules” (listed below) as a starting point for creating a time-sharing schedule for the parents.
Factors to Consider when Devising Parental Time-Sharing Schedules
When a Florida family court is devising a parental time-sharing schedule, it must determine what is in the child’s best interest. Therefore, the family court will consider all factors that impact the welfare of the child and the circumstances of the family, which include the following:
- The ability and willingness of each parent to encourage a relationship between the other parent and the children, to cooperate with the other parent on timesharing issues, to communicate relevant information about the children and to make reasonable adjustments when special circumstances arise
- The responsibility each parent is prepared to assume after the parenting plan is devised including the degree to which the parent must delegate their parenting responsibilities to third parties
- The capacity and propensity of the parent to value their children’s needs over their own desires/needs
- The duration a child has lived with one of the parents in a stable positive environment and the value of maintaining the status quo
- Impact of time spent in transit during parent residential exchanges
- Moral fitness, including the mental and physical health of the parents
- School, community and home records of children
- The preferences of the children (depending on age and maturity)
- Demonstrated parenting abilities in terms of activities, rules and routines
- Evidence of spousal abuse and child abuse or neglect
- The parenting role of each parent prior to the child custody case
- False claims of abuse or neglect
*[Derived from the Florida Supreme Court Approved Family Law Form 12.995(a), Parenting Plan (10/11)]
Because of the numerous factors that may impact the court’s determination of the amount of time a parent spends with his or her child, litigation over parental time-sharing can be one of the most contentious issues in a divorce or paternity case. James S. Cunha and his legal team will help guide you through this emotional minefield to reach a durable and workable child time sharing schedule.
An effective parenting plan is one that defines all issues including parental time-sharing schedules to avoid subsequent confusion and disputes. Because high conflict parental time sharing disputes can mean stress and anxiety for both our clients and their children, we work diligently to develop stable and workable schedules. Our goal is to shield our clients and their children from the potentially adverse emotional consequences of bitter disputes over time-sharing by reaching creative solutions through alternate dispute resolutions when possible and through effective and aggressive litigation when necessary.
Experienced and Compassionate West Palm Beach Parental Time-Sharing Lawyers
We are loyal and passionate about our clients’ cases and consistently seek the best possible parental time sharing schedules for our clients and their children. We bring a substantial level of skill, knowledge and diligence along with the ability to think outside of the box so that we can be the most effective advocates for our clients. We understand the importance of preserving your close connection to your children and will work hard to protect your parent-child relationship.
No matter where you are located, our experienced attorneys at the Law Offices of James S. Cunha are just a phone call away. Even if you just have family law questions about child custody or time sharing arrangements in Florida, but have not decided to take action, we can provide initial answers to help you determine the best possible approach.
The Law Offices of James S. Cunha, P.A. assist clients in all Divorce and Family Law Matters throughout West Palm Beach, Lake Worth, Palm Beach, Palm Beach Gardens, Boynton Beach, Jupiter, Delray Beach, and Boca Raton in Palm Beach County. We also offer legal representation to clients who reside in Martin, St. Lucie, Okeechobee, Hendry, Broward, and Miami-Dade counties.