Divorced parents in Florida must create a parenting plan that clearly outlines their custody and visitation arrangement.
As your children grow or your circumstances change, you may want to modify this plan. Before you do this, you should understand Florida’s laws regarding co-parenting.
What should be in our parenting plan?
According to Florida law, your parenting plan must address the following:
- Division of day-to-day parenting responsibilities
- Your time-sharing schedule
- Who will be responsible for health care, school and other activities
- How both parents will communicate with the child
Your parenting plan must address these issues in sufficient detail for the court to approve it.
Can I modify the parenting plan?
To modify the plan, you must prove that you have experienced a change in circumstances. The court must determine that the requested modification is in your child’s best interest.
Can I deny visitation if my ex does not pay child support?
You must honor your parenting plan unless the court decides otherwise. You may not withhold visitation for unpaid child support.
My ex will not let me see my child. Can I stop paying child support?
You must pay child support even if your ex is withholding visitation. The court may order the offending parent to make up the lost time or modify the parenting plan.
What if my child does not want to see my ex?
The law generally considers “frequent and continuing contact with both parents” to be in the child’s best interest. If your child is old enough, the court may take his or her preferences into account, but your child can not make the decision independently.
Co-parenting after divorce can be frustrating. Understanding and following the law can help you avoid conflicts and co-parent more effectively.