How Divorce & Child Custody in Florida Work

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How Divorce & Child CustodyDivorce is always an emotional experience, but adding in the stress of figuring out child custody can turn a simple divorce into a nightmare. Parents have much stronger feelings about where their children end up than they have about material possessions, so compromises are more difficult to reach. In Florida, child custody comprises two distinct parts: parental responsibility (legal custody) and time sharing (physical custody). All parents asking for divorce must agree on both parts of child custody, or the court will do it for them.

Parental Responsibility

Parental responsibility, or legal custody, refers to the ability to make decisions about important parts of the child’s life, such as education, healthcare, and religion. Parental responsibility is typically divided equally between the two parents unless there are special circumstances. For example, if one parent has shown a pattern of making poor choices for the child, their parental responsibility may be lessened and more control given to the other parent. Also, if one parent spends substantially more time with the child as part of the time-sharing agreement, that parent may also be awarded more parental responsibility. (more…)

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A Guide to Florida’s Alimony Laws

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alimony lawsMany factors must be considered by the court when deciding how to handle divorce cases. Each case is unique and must be thoroughly reviewed before passing judgment. This is especially true when determining alimony payments; alimony is a payment made from one ex-spouse to the other due to a financial disparity between the two at the time of divorce. There are five types of alimony that can be awarded in the state of Florida.

Types of Alimony in Florida

  • Temporary alimony

Also known as spousal support, temporary alimony is ordered to be paid during the divorce proceedings only. Once the final divorce judgment is made, temporary alimony typically is converted to one of the other types of alimony. (more…)

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How a Military Divorce Differs from a Civilian Divorce

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Military DivorceThere’s a lot of conflicting information out there about military divorce. Higher divorce rates among military couples have always been rumored, but the evidence is sparse, and more research is needed. One thing guaranteed in a military divorce is that you will run into issues that civilians never face. A few of the most common issues military members face when divorcing are:

  • How to split a military pension.

The federal government considers a military pension to be a marital asset and allows state courts to treat it as such when deciding how to divide marital property.  (more…)

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Reasons to Request a Child Custody Modification

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Request a Child CustodyOne of the most difficult parts of any divorce or separation is child custody. No parent wants to think about not being with their children, but this is a challenge a couple parting ways must face. At the time of the divorce or separation, a family court judge will decide how to split the children’s time between the two parents. The judge may choose to award primary custody to one parent with the other parent allowed visitation or scheduled overnight visits; Joint custody awarded to both parents, with the children splitting their time evenly between the two; or, Sole custody awarded to one parent, with the other parent having no visitation rights at all.

There are many factors that the judge will consider when ruling on a child custody hearing. These factors may change at any time, justifying a review of the custody arrangement and possible modifications if it is in the children’s best interests. Just a few reasons a parent may wish to request a child custody modification include: (more…)

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What Rights Do Fathers Have in Florida?

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Fathers have the same rights as mothers in Florida. Under the law, neither fathers nor mothers have any presumptions for or against them when it comes to their children.

But judges are human, and humans have biases. Judges will sometimes rely on their prejudices rather than the evidence presented to them. As a result, you may receive an unfair outcome, even though Florida law establishes a policy against discrimination.

Here are a few of the rights you should expect as a father in Florida.

Legal Custody

“Legal custody” describes the right to have a voice in decisions affecting the child. Legal custody includes decisions about the child’s religion, activities, education, and medical care.

Florida law does not mandate joint legal custody. But in most cases, a father should be able to receive joint legal custody.


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