The state of Florida is shared parental responsibility unless the parents are unable to agree on those major decisions, in which case a judge will decide. Ideally, the courts want both parents to be involved in their child’s upbringing and life.
The judge will assume both parents are equally interested in their child’s life. In order for time-sharing agreements to be enforceable, the parenting plan and time-sharing agreement must be extremely detailed.
If you and your child’s other parent are unable to reach a mutually acceptable arrangement regarding how parental responsibilities will be shared, a Florida judge could step in and make those decisions for you.
Florida judge will likely consider the following factors when deciding on parental responsibility:
Which parent is more likely to allow the child to have frequent, continuing contact with the other parent;
- Which parent has the ability to provide the more stable home environment;
- Which parent has the ability to provide necessary items including food, clothing and medical care;
- The moral fitness of each parent;
- The job security of each parent;
- Whether one parent travels frequently for his or her job;
- The amount of time the child has been in a stable home environment;
- The emotional bond between each parent and the child;
- The “proposed” home of each parent after the divorce;
- The child’s history, concerning home, school and community;
- The extent of each parent’s knowledge of the child’s schedule, likes, dislikes, friends, medical information and school information;
- The parenting tasks typically performed by each parent;
- The extent parenting responsibilities were and will be conducted by a third party;
- The ability of each parent to provide a consistent schedule for the child, and
- Any evidence of domestic violence, child abuse or child neglect.