Filing for Custody in Florida – Secrets of a Family Law Attorney

filing for custody in Florida - Boca Raton, FLThe Uniform Child Custody Jurisdiction and Enforcement Act Affidavit, or Florida Supreme Court Approved Family Law Form 12.902d, is the First Step to a Parenting Plan

In this post, Jordan Gerber provides the best family law attorney advice on filing for custody in Florida.

Before a party can file parenting plan, he or she must complete certain documents. Specifically, a Uniform Child Custody Jurisdiction and Enforcement Act Affidavit. This is also  known as Florida Supreme Court Approved Family Law Form 12.902d.

The Uniform Child Custody Jurisdiction and Enforcement Act Affidavit, or Florida Supreme Court Approved Family Law Form 12.902d, Can’t be Waived

The Uniform Child Custody Jurisdiction and Enforcement Act Affidavit provides valuable information to the court. It must state where, and with whom, a minor child has taken residence. This includes the five years prior to filing for custody in Florida.  Florida Supreme Court Approved Family Law Form 12.902d vests the court with jurisdiction over children. Either for purposes of time sharing or child support. The two ways to do this are to establish home state jurisdiction or emergency jurisdiction for temporary relief.

All cases involving minor children require a party to file a Florida Supreme Court Approved Family Law Form 12.902d with the initial petition. This is true even if child related issues aren’t in dispute. The Respondent also must file a  Uniform Child Custody Jurisdiction and Enforcement Act Affidavit.

Best Family Law Attorney Advice: Not Everything in a Parenting Plan Can Be Enforced when Filing for Custody in Florida

There has to be a parenting plan approved by the court whenever Florida child custody is an issue. The plan has to include a detailed time sharing schedule that states their child custody arrangement in detail. The Palm Beach County parenting plan also must contain a firm legal framework for making decisions about how the parties will be parenting children of the relationship. The types of decisions vary. For example, what sports the child participates in or where they can travel with each parent.

The separation of church and state has always been a hotbed of controversy, both within and outside the family structure.  Therefore, religion often comes up when parties contemplate future plans for their kids. Consequently, the religious traditions the child will follow are also sometimes addressed in their parenting plan.

filing for custody in Florida Boca Raton, FLFlorida Statute Controls Filing For Custody In Florida

Under Florida Statute 61.13, a Palm Beach County family court has the ability to award one parent ultimate decision-making power in a parenting plan. This allows one parent to make certain decisions about the welfare of the child alone.

This unilateral final say can be awarded even when there is shared parental responsibility in terms of time sharing.  Usually, this is the final resort when the parties are unable to agree on a decision that affects the child’s education or general welfare. Florida Statute expressly lists some of these areas which include education and medical care. Decisions about religion, however, are notably absent.

The Best Family Law Attorney Will Give a Client the Lowdown and Save Them from Looking Like a Fool When it Comes to Enforcement of a Parenting Plan

Palm Beach County family courts can make decisions on most things that the parents can’t agree on. With one exception. When one parent objects, a judge can’t make a decision favoring one religion over another. The reasoning is that a judge has no business in deciding such a sensitive family issue. The parents must be left to address these questions. Even if they can’t agree.

Figuring out how to raise children is difficult. Whether you have a support service to help out or not. Divorced parents having to resolve these matters can seem counter-intuitive. Whether you are in court or enjoying drinks with friends, there is a reason no one wants to discuss politics or religion. Consequently, two people who are already at odds and need to work together to resolve an issue as sensitive as religion can send anyone over the edge.  Having the best Family Law Attorney to educate you on these matters is not only important, but can prevent the unnecessary waste of resources.

Filing for Custody in Florida when Modification is Necessary Due to a Party’s Failure to Comply with their Parenting Plan

When a party refuses to honor their time sharing schedule, the other parent may seek modification under the rules of filing for custody in Florida. The same formal procedures apply. Hence, in a modification action, each party still has to file a Uniform Child Custody Jurisdiction and Enforcement Act Affidavit Otherwise known as Florida Supreme Court Approved Family Law Form 12.902d.

filing for custody in Florida Boca Raton, FLThe Best Family Law Attorney Will Explain Remedies For Failure To Comply With A Parenting Plan.

After a court has found that a party has indeed violated their parenting plan, a judge can take several actions:

  • Award the parent a sufficient amount of extra time sharing as compensation.
  • Order the violating parent to pay reasonable court costs and attorneys’ fees incurred by the other to enforce their children parent plan.
  • Compel the party to attend the best parenting course approved by the judicial circuit.
  • Order the parent to do community service. The order can’t interfere with the welfare of the plans children.
  • Order the party to take on the financial burden to enforce the time sharing included in the parties parenting plan if the kid lives more than 60 miles away from the other parent.
  • Modify the parenting plan children under the rules of filing for custody in Florida.
  • Impose any other reasonable sanction as a result of noncompliance.

Warning: This is Separate and Apart from Florida Child Support

A parent’s time sharing rights must be honored even if the other parent fails to pay child support. Similarly, if a parent refuses to honor a parent’s time sharing rights, the other parent can’t withhold child ordered support.

The Importance of Florida Statute 61.13 when Filing for Custody in Florida

The best interest of the child holds top priority in the creation of a Florida parenting plan. The best interest of the child is made through the evaluation of several factors. These are found in Florida Statute 61.13 which is the foundation of filing for custody in Florida:

  1. The demonstrated capacity and disposition of each parent to facilitate and encourage a close and continuing parent-child relationship
  2. The anticipated division of parental responsibilities after the litigation
  3. Each parent’s ability to determine, consider, and act upon the needs of the child as opposed to their own
  4. Length of time the child has lived in a stable, satisfactory environment and the desirability of maintaining continuity
  5. Geographic viability of the parenting plan
  6. Moral fitness of each parent
  7. Mental and physical health of each parent
  8. The home, school, and community record of the child

Additional Factors a Court Considers when Creating or Modifying a Florida Parenting Plan

  1. Reasonable preference of the child
  2. The demonstrated knowledge, capacity, and disposition of each parent to be informed of the circumstances of the minor child
  3. Each parent’s desire and ability to provide a consistent routine for the child.
  4. The demonstrated capacity of each parent to communicate with and keep the other parent informed of issues and activities regarding the minor child
  5. Evidence of domestic violence, sexual violence, child abuse, abandonment, or neglect
  6. 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, abandonment, or neglect
  7. The particular parenting tasks customarily performed by each parent before and during the pending custody litigation
  8. Each parents desire and ability to participate and be involved in school and extracurricular activities
  9. Demonstrated capacity and disposition of each parent to maintain an environment for the child which is free from substance abuse
  10. The capacity and disposition of each parent to protect the child from the ongoing courts states litigation
  11. The developmental stages and needs of the child and each parent’s ability to meet the child’s developmental needs
  12. Any other factor that is relevant to the determination of a specific schedules parenting plan

Click  Palm Beach County Family Law Attorney Lawyer Boca Raton today to schedule your consultation. Proudly Serving Boca Raton, Delray Beach, West Palm Beach and all of Palm Beach County, Florida. Assisting in all matters of Florida Family Law.

Palm Beach County Boca Raton Lawyers Practice Areas Include:

  • Simplified Dissolution of Marriage

  • Contested Divorce

  • Uncontested Divorce

  • Child Custody Laws

  • Broward County Child Support

  • Florida Parenting Plan

  • Time Sharing

  • Visitation

  • Filing For Custody In Florida

  • Relocation Under Florida Statute 61.13001

  • Florida Statutes Chapter 39

  • Paternity

  • Modification of Child Custody In Florida

  • Florida Child Support Enforcement

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