Divorce and paternity are difficult and emotional issues. Child custody and visitation are addressed in a parenting plan, a required document for divorcing parents or unmarried fathers with legal rights. There are many factors to consider in a parenting plan and it is highly recommended that parents develop a workable plan. Otherwise, the court will decide issues regarding parental responsibilities on their behalf. High-conflict cases and parents who live more than fifty miles from each other require more structured parenting plans. These parents generally have more difficulty communicating and co-parenting.
Reasons that a parent can obtain full physical and legal custody, excluding the co-parent, in Florida are:
Under Florida law, an unmarried father has no legal rights, even if the father is named on the birth certificate. If a child’s mother denies the father’s paternity, it must be established through genetic testing. Establishing paternity gives both parents the legal right to obtain a child support order and court-ordered custody or visitation. Having a legally recognized father is essential for a child to have certain legal rights. These include obtaining information on family medical history, health or life insurance benefits, child support, social security, military benefits, and inheritances.
A parent can petition for a modification of custody and visitation if the child’s needs have changed, the child’s safety is at risk, or the circumstances of either parent have changed significantly. The petitioning parent must provide compelling evidence of substantial, material, and unforeseeable changes in circumstances. Examples may be the relocation of a parent, domestic violence, a significant illness of a parent or a child, or evidence that a child is in danger when under the supervision of a parent. To show that a modification is in the child’s best interest, a parent can present medical records, witness testimony, school records, photos, e-mails, and more.
Attorney Jimmie Sparrow understands how Family Court works and what evidence is needed to succeed in your case. Our law office will deal with the legal system and make sure enforceable agreements are in place. We will advocate for your parental rights in an amicable agreement or help you resolve your custody and visitation disputes in court.
Help is just a phone call away. Call Sparrow Law Office, P.A. for compassionate representation for all of your family law needs. Our office is conveniently located in Ocala, Florida. Contact us at 352-421-9261 to schedule a consultation to discuss your concerns.