Our Tampa Divorce Attorneys will aggressively represent you in your divorce to protect you and your children’s rights and futures. The following are common questions posed by individuals during their cases, answered by our Tampa divorce lawyer.
Who gets the kids?
Florida Courts focus solely on what is in the best interest of the children when determining who the child will stay with. Florida Courts have a strong preference for involving both parents in a child’s life. Many parents request sole custody, but this is somewhat rare because of the policy consideration for both parents to be a part of a child’s life. Our Attorneys will make sure you get as much time with your children as possible!
During the court’s analysis, it will consider the following factors pursuant to Florida Statute Section 61.13:
- The demonstrated capacity and disposition of each parent to facilitate and encourage a close and continuing parent-child relationship, to honor the time-sharing schedule, and to be reasonable when changes are required.
- The anticipated division of parental responsibilities after the litigation, including the extent to which parental responsibilities will be delegated to third parties.
- The demonstrated capacity and disposition of each parent to determine, consider, and act upon the needs of the child as opposed to the needs or desires of the parent.
- The length of time the child has lived in a stable, satisfactory environment and the desirability of maintaining continuity.
- The geographic viability of the parenting plan, with special attention paid to the needs of school-age children and the amount of time to be spent traveling to effectuate the parenting plan. This factor does not create a presumption for or against relocation of either parent with a child.
- The moral fitness of the parents.
- The mental and physical health of the parents.
- The home, school, and community record of the child.
- The reasonable preference of the child, if the court deems the child to be of sufficient intelligence, understanding, and experience to express a preference.
- The demonstrated knowledge, capacity, and disposition of each parent to be informed of the circumstances of the minor child, including, but not limited to, the child’s friends, teachers, medical care providers, daily activities, and favorite things.
- The demonstrated capacity and disposition of each parent to provide a consistent routine for the child, such as discipline, and daily schedules for homework, meals, and bedtime.
- The demonstrated capacity of each parent to communicate with and keep the other parent informed of issues and activities regarding the minor child, and the willingness of each parent to adopt a unified front on all major issues when dealing with the child.
- Evidence of domestic violence, sexual violence, child abuse, child abandonment, or child neglect, regardless of whether a prior or pending action relating to those issues has been brought. If the court accepts evidence of prior or pending actions regarding domestic violence, sexual violence, child abuse, child abandonment, or child neglect, the court must specifically acknowledge in writing that such evidence was considered when evaluating the best interests of the child.
- Evidence that either parent has knowingly provided false information to the court regarding any prior or pending action regarding domestic violence, sexual violence, child abuse, child abandonment, or child neglect.
- The particular parenting tasks customarily performed by each parent and the division of parental responsibilities before the institution of litigation and during the pending litigation, including the extent to which parenting responsibilities were undertaken by third parties.
- The demonstrated capacity and disposition of each parent to participate and be involved in the child’s school and extracurricular activities.
- The demonstrated capacity and disposition of each parent to maintain an environment for the child which is free from substance abuse.
- The capacity and disposition of each parent to protect the child from the ongoing litigation as demonstrated by not discussing the litigation with the child, not sharing documents or electronic media related to the litigation with the child, and refraining from disparaging comments about the other parent to the child.
- The developmental stages and needs of the child and the demonstrated capacity and disposition of each parent to meet the child’s developmental needs.
- Any other factor that is relevant to the determination of a specific parenting plan, including the time-sharing schedule.
As you can see, the Court can literally consider nearly anything in determining which parent spends the majority of the time with the minor children. We will assist in ensuring all relevant factors are brought to the Court’s attention.
Who gets the stuff? Who gets the debt?
Florida Statute Section 61.075 codifies “equitable distribution” which relates to who gets the assets and debts during a Florida divorce. In short, marital assets and marital debts are divided equally, 50/50 unless the parties are able to prove to the Court, why the assets and debts should be divided unequally. At the end of the day, this is where our Tampa Divorce Attorneys can help to ensure you get what you deserve out of your divorce or other family law matter. We discuss elsewhere on our blog what constitutes a marital asset in our article titled “Considering A Divorce, What is Equitable Distribution?” It provides a brief overview of equitable distribution of marital debts and assets.
If you have questions concerning your divorce, contact our divorce lawyers in Tampa, FL. We have handled hundreds of family law matters through the entire Tampa Bay area. If you would like to contact one of our Attorneys immediately, please either call our Office immediately, we have folks standing by to assist you with your case 24 hours a day, or use the “contact us now” tab in the upper right hand corner. Further, we have a free, secure chatbox in the lower right hand corner, where you will actually speak with one of our Attorneys. We appreciate your time in checking our website and look forward to hearing from you.