Miami Child Custody Attorney

Child Custody Attorney in Miami, Florida: Understanding Time-Sharing and Parental Responsibility

Child Custody Attorney in MiamiEqual Standing for Parents:

Florida law does not default to granting custody to the mother; rather, it prioritizes the best interests of the child. Both parents have an equal standing for custody, aiming to provide the child with the opportunity for quality time with both.

Initial Custody for Unmarried Parents:

In cases where the parents are unmarried, the mother is initially granted full custody. However, this may change once the father establishes paternity.

Determining Custody: Courts and the Child’s Best Interests
Judicial Intervention in Disputes:

When parents cannot agree on a time-sharing plan, a judge will step in to decide based on the child’s best interests.

Child-Centric Approach:

Florida’s custody decisions revolve around the child’s well-being, as courts recognize that children are often the most affected by divorce. Demonstrating that your proposed arrangement serves the child’s best interests is crucial.

Factors Influencing Time-Sharing:

Florida considers various factors when determining time-sharing arrangements, including each parent’s ability to provide for the child’s needs, their physical and mental health, the stability of their homes, geographical feasibility, willingness to facilitate contact with the other parent, and any history of domestic violence.

Different Custody Arrangements:

Child custody can take various forms, with the court deciding whether one parent, both parents, or joint custody is most appropriate. When one parent is granted sole custody, they have legal and physical custody, allowing them to make decisions regarding the child’s education, religion, health, and discipline, as well as determining the child’s residence.

Shared Parental Responsibility:

In Florida, joint custody is referred to as shared parental responsibility. Florida defaults to shared parental responsibility because involving both parents in the child’s upbringing is seen as ideal. Here, both parents must jointly approve all decisions related to the child. One parent is designated as the primary joint custodian, while the other parent may receive visitation rights. The child primarily resides with the parent named as the primary joint custodian.

Identifying Unfit Parents and Listening to Children’s Preferences
Defining Unfit Parent:

Florida law defines an unfit parent based on criteria such as child abuse, neglect, abandonment, a history of drug abuse, and mental illness.

Age and Discretion:

There isn’t a specific age at which a judge will consider a child’s preferences regarding custody in Florida. Instead, the judge exercises discretion to determine if the child is old enough to understand the choice, possess the necessary intelligence, and know both parents well enough for their preference to be meaningful.

Guardian Ad Litem: Protecting the Child’s Best Interests
Appointing an Impartial Guardian:

Courts may appoint a guardian ad litem in cases marked by toxic parental relationships, suspected abuse or neglect, or parental or child mental illness. This guardian investigates and makes recommendations by interviewing family members, teachers, doctors, and the children themselves, all with a focus on the child’s best interests. If parents cannot agree on significant decisions, a judge will step in to make those choices on behalf of the child.

Contact us today to take the next step:

In navigating the complexities of child custody in Florida, ensuring the best interests of your child are prioritized is paramount. At Altawil Law Group, our experienced child custody attorneys understand the nuances of family law and are dedicated to advocating for you and your child. If you need assistance with a child custody matter, don’t hesitate to reach out to us today for personalized guidance and support. Contact us here to schedule a consultation and take the first step towards securing your child’s future. Your child deserves the best legal representation possible, and we’re here to provide it.

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