The term “custody” does not exist under Florida law. There are no longer “primary” and “secondary” parents or “visitation.” The time a parent spends with their child is called “time-sharing.” The Parenting Plan may be agreed to by the parties or established by the Court and contains the time a child spends with each parent, which is based on the child’s best interest.

Florida is not a 50/50 state. There is no presumption for or against a parent based on gender for a specific time-sharing schedule or any other aspect of childrearing. Rather, public policy strongly favors that both parents maintain frequent and meaningful contact with their children after the parents separate.

Some factors the Court considers to support the best interests of the child when establishing time-sharing include:

  • the capacity and disposition of each parent regarding facilitating and encouraging a close continued parent-child relationship,
  • the length of time the child has lived in a stable home environment,
  • the mental, physical and moral health of both parents,
  • the reasonable preference of the child (if age appropriate), and
  • domestic violence, substance abuse, or other known abuse issues for both parents.

Understandably, parents are concerned with sharing enough time and enjoying quality experiences with their children. Our Family Law attorneys have decades of experience assisting families to create a comprehensive and personalized Parenting Plan or, if necessary, presenting the necessary evidence to a judge to determine the best interests of your family’s needs.

Our skilled attorneys are qualified to establish child time-sharing arrangements, especially at the onset of the parents’ separation, when emotions are heightened, and difficult decisions are necessary. We can help guide you through the process to protect your interests and the best interests of your children to obtain a fair time-sharing parenting plan that places your child’s best interest at the forefront.