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Paternity and Time-Sharing

Orange County Attorney Assists Clients with Time-Sharing in Florida

Solid family law advice from an experienced legal team

If you divorce and have children in Florida, custody is based on a time-sharing schedule established by the court. Since the court considers many factors when deciding if an equal or majority time-sharing plan should be created, it’s in your best interests to consult with a skilled family law attorney. At McShane & McShane Law Firm, P.A, everyone at our firm — from our hardworking staff to our experienced and highly qualified lawyer — is dedicated to helping you resolve your case as quickly and favorably as possible.

Paternity and fathers’ rights

In Florida, the legal father of a child has all rights of and to the child and in raising him or her. When a married couple has a child, the court presumes the husband to be the father. If you believe you are the biological father of a child, you have the right to bring a paternity action to become the child’s legal father. After reviewing your case, the court will ultimately do what is in the best interests of the child. Once paternity is established, a time-sharing and parenting plan is created.

What is time-sharing?

Unless you have a legal background or have been divorced in Orange County or elsewhere in Florida, you may have never heard of time-sharing. Time-sharing is a shared custody plan in which the child resides primarily with one parent and the other parent is awarded ample visitation. The court strives whenever possible to keep both parents involved in a child’s life. When one parent is deemed unfit, supervised and restricted time-sharing arrangements may be created as a necessity. In such cases, the court focuses on the best interests of the child. Some of the factors the court considers include:

  • Each parent’s willingness to nourish and support a relationship between the child and the other parent, to respect a time-sharing schedule and to be reasonable when changes occur
  • Each parent’s ability to place the needs of the child above his or her own
  • The mental, physical and emotional health of each parent
  • The ability of each parent to offer the child a stable home environment
  • Any history of domestic violence, sexual violence, child abuse, child abandonment or child neglect
  • The child’s wishes, if the court deems the child to be of a sufficient age, intelligence, understanding and experience
  • The ability of each parent to take part in the child’s school and extracurricular activities

Time-sharing is handled separately from child support. As a result, a parent cannot refuse visitation if child support has not been paid. If you are behind on child support payments because of a job loss or other hardship, a family law attorney can help you petition the court to modify your child support obligation. Your spouse has the right to seek the enforcement of court-ordered child support if you fail or refuse to pay it.

What is a parenting plan?

A parenting plan outlines how you and your spouse are going to raise your children after the dissolution of your marriage. Typically, a parenting plan covers time-sharing, holiday time-sharing, involvement in extracurricular activities, healthcare, education and traveling out of state. If you are dissolving your marriage or establishing paternity, you are required to have a time-sharing schedule and parenting plan.

An approved parenting plan carries the weight of a court order, and a failure by you or your former spouse to follow its terms may result in a finding of contempt of court. Our firm is adept at handling motions for contempt. It is important to develop a plan that works for you. An experienced family law attorney can help you draft and review a sound plan.

Get knowledgeable counsel from an Orlando legal team

In central Florida, including Orange, Seminole and Osceola counties, McShane & McShane Law Firm, P.A has a reputation for providing family law clients with personalized legal service. To schedule a free consultation to discuss your case with our skilled lawyer, call 407-648-1500 or contact us onlineSe habla español.

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  • Orlando Office
    836 North Highland Avenue
    Orlando, Florida 32803-3941
    Phone: 407-648-1500
    Fax: 407-648-2027

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