Without a doubt, the most emotional and sometimes complicated area of family law is time-sharing and child support. Other states commonly refer to the determination of where a child will reside as custody, however, Florida does not use that term.
In Florida, it is called time-sharing.
One of the first things that will need to be addressed when a divorce (involving children) is filed is a temporary parenting plan. It is important for the children to have continued contact with both parents during the divorce process. In fact, there is a standard court order that is filed in every family law case ordering the parties to continue to foster a relationship with both parents. This includes time-sharing, communication, and not disparaging the other parent. Only under extreme circumstances, such as incarceration, an injunction, child abuse/neglect, or drug abuse, will the court permit one parent to keep the children from the other parent.
Through the divorce process, the parents will either agree to a permanent parenting plan, or the court will order one upon finalizing the divorce. Parenting plans do not just include visitation, they encompass all aspects of child raising including decision making for schooling, religion, holidays, vacations, medical needs and extra-curricular activities.
Child support will also be dealt with in the divorce proceedings. Child support is simply a mathematical formula based on each party’s individual income, child related expenses and the number of overnights in the parenting plan. The numbers are inputted into a spreadsheet or software and the amount is calculated. It is not generally a negotiable amount as it is solely based on the formula enacted by the State of Florida. A family law lawyer can assist you in determining what should be declared so that your child support is accurately calculated.
In order to modify an existing parenting plan, the moving party must show a substantial change in circumstance. The court will review any changes that may affect one parent’s ability to comply with the current parenting plan. If appropriate the court can modify that parenting plan and reduce or increase time-sharing or simply modify the time-sharing schedule. Contact the family law lawyers at Coyne Law for a free consultation to learn whether you may be able to obtain a modification of your existing order.
In order to modify an existing child support order, the moving party must show a substantial change in circumstance. Involuntary changes in employment may be sufficient to warrant a reductions just as an increase in the other party’s income may warrant an increase in child support. Contact the family law lawyers at Coyne Law for a free consultation to learn whether you may be able to obtain a modification of your existing order.