By Florida Law, a judge will issue two separate orders. One is a parental responsibility order and the other is a time-sharing schedule. While the term joint custody is common in divorce cases, and you may consider this meaning that parents share custody of their children equally, “joint custody” does not exist in the State of Florida Law.
A time sharing plan is a schedule of the time parents will have child custody.
Florida Statute 61.13(2)(c)2 requires shared parental responsibility unless it would be detrimental to the child. If you don’t ask for sole responsibility, you’re not going to get it. It is important that you let your family lawyer know if this is your request. You must also be prepared to give very good reasons to back up the request
The parental responsibility order is quite convoluted though. Included in the parenting plan, under Florida Statute,
a judge can grant sole parental responsibility, shared parental responsibility, or shared parental responsibility with ultimate responsibility to one parent.
The responsibility that a parent can have over a child will govern things such as where they go to school, what church they may attend and other matters.
It can actually be detrimental to the child if parents argue over the best interests of the child. These types of parents often end up back in court, asking the judge to make a controversial decision.
Divorce, with children involved, is only more complicated and stressful. A family lawyer familiar with child custody proceedings and understanding of your needs can help you through this rough time.