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Stuart Child Custody Attorneys

Protecting the Best Interests of You and Your Child in Martin County

If you and your child’s other parent are not together, you may need to get a child custody agreement that the court approves. The arrangement may contain provisions concerning parenting time (physical custody) and parental responsibility (legal custody). When determining custody, also called parental time-sharing, the court will consider various factors, including each parent’s ability to encourage the child to have a relationship with the other and the capacity of each parent to adhere to the orders. Ultimately, the court’s decision will be based on what it feels is in the child's best interest.

At ADL Law, P.A., we help clients through emotional and challenging child custody matters in Stuart. Our attorneys understand how these case’s outcomes can affect the family unit. That is why we deliver personalized and compassionate legal representation. When you choose us, we’ll take the time to learn about your situation and your goals. Our child custody attorneys in Stuart will work diligently to protect the best interests of you and your child.

To schedule a consultation with one of our Stuart child custody lawyers, please call us at (772) 210-9097 or contact us online today.

What Are The Different Types of Child Custody in Florida?

Continuous contact with both parents is important for children. Equally important is each parent having a role in making decisions for and raising their child. When parents aren’t together, ensuring frequent contact and shared parental responsibilities can be facilitated by receiving a parental time-sharing order from the court.

In Florida, different types of child custody arrangements can be ordered and in various combinations. A parental time-sharing order specifies who the child lives with, which parent has decision-making responsibilities, and how daily child care will be handled.

The following are the two kinds of custody concerning these matters:

  • Physical custody: Florida courts refer to this as time-sharing and is concerned with which parent the child lives with.
  • Legal custody: Also called parental responsibility, this concerns which parent makes important decisions about their child’s upbringing, such as those involving health care, religion, and education.

Both physical and legal custody can be awarded as joint or physical. With joint custody, both parents share responsibilities. For instance, a joint physical (shared parenting time) and joint legal custody (shared parental responsibility) arrangement would enable both parents’ homes to serve as the primary residence for the child, and both parents would have decision-making rights. With sole physical (sole parenting time) and sole legal custody (sole parental responsibility), only one parent would provide the primary residence and have the right to make decisions for the child.

Our child custody attorneys in Stuart can discuss, in-depth, the different custody arrangements and how each can affect your rights and responsibilities, as well as the amount of time you spend with your child.

How Is Parental Time Sharing Determined in FL?

When deciding on child custody arrangements, the court will do what is in the best interest of the child. The best interest of the child means that the child’s safety and welfare will not be endangered by being with one parent or the other.

Florida courts consider many factors when determining whether a time-sharing arrangement is in the child's best interest.

The factors include, but are not limited to, the following:

  • Each parent’s ability to encourage the child to have a relationship with the other
  • Each parent’s ability to comply with the time-sharing arrangements
  • Each parent’s ability to take care of the child’s needs
  • Each parent’s ability to provide a safe environment free from substance abuse
  • Each parent’s moral fitness
  • Each parent’s physical and mental health
  • The amount of time the child has lived in a stable environment
  • The child’s adjustment to home, school, and community
  • The child’s preferences (if the child is old enough)
  • Any evidence of domestic violence

At ADL Law, P.A., our Stuart child custody attorneys can develop a legal strategy to present facts to argue for a certain custody arrangement on your behalf.

Grounds For Modifications of Custody

Changes in the parent's or child’s situation might make an existing custody order difficult to abide by. Or, in some cases, one parent may willfully disobey the court’s orders. When the current child custody arrangement is no longer practical, a parent may seek to have it modified.

The court will modify child custody only if there has been “a substantial, material, and unanticipated change of circumstances” (Florida Statutes § 61.13).

Our Stuart child custody lawyers handle post-judgment modifications. We can guide you through the process of pursuing a change in your existing order.

Can Grandparents or Other Family Members Seek Custody or Visitation Rights in Florida?

Yes, under certain circumstances, grandparents or other family members can seek custody or visitation rights in Florida. Florida law recognizes that in some situations, it may be in the best interest of the child to have contact with extended family members, such as grandparents or aunts and uncles.

To seek custody or visitation rights, the grandparent or family member must file a petition with the court and demonstrate that they have a significant relationship with the child and that it would be in the child's best interest to have contact with them. The court will consider factors such as the length and quality of the relationship, the child's preference, the mental and physical health of the parties involved, and any other relevant factors.

It is important to note that the process for grandparents or family members to seek custody or visitation rights in Florida can be complex, and it is recommended that they seek the advice of a qualified family law attorney to navigate the process effectively.

Contact Our Child Custody Attorneys Today

If you need help developing or modifying a child custody arrangement, speak with a family law attorney about your case. These are often challenging matters complicated by their sensitive and emotional nature. Our child custody lawyer in Stuart can take care of the details and relieve some of your legal burdens.

Contact ADL Law, P.A., today to discuss your case with one of our child custody attorneys in Stuart.

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