When divorcing or separating parents are involved in a Miami child custody case, many want to know what is required in a parenting plan. A Florida parenting plan is a road map parents agree to follow or are ordered to follow that describes how the parents will cooperate in raising their child until the child turns 18. Some basic required provisions contribute to the foundation for a successful co-parenting relationship.
According to Florida child custody laws a parenting plan, at a minimum, must (see Florida Statute 61.13):
1. Describe in adequate detail how the parents will share and be responsible for the daily tasks associated with the upbringing of the child;
2. Include the time-sharing schedule arrangements that specify the time that the minor child will spend with each parent;
3. Designate who will be responsible for:
a. Any and all forms of health care. If the court orders shared parental responsibility over health care decisions, the parenting plan must provide that either parent may consent to mental health treatment for the child.
b. School-related matters, including the address to be used for school-boundary determination and registration.
c. Other activities; and
4. Describe in adequate detail the methods and technologies that the parents will use to communicate with the child.
While these provisions provide general categories, the detail involved in each category is important because it will govern the parent-child relationship. Agreeable parents can insert provisions that are unique to their families, such as special holiday celebrations and religious preferences.
Some other provisions to consider and to encourage discussion between separated parents include:
- At what age the parents agree it is appropriate for a child to use social media
- When piercings or tattoos for a child are appropriate, if at all
- Whether major haircuts or hair color changes for a child must be approved by both parents
Creating a parenting plan that is right for your family is no delicate matter. For that reason, it may be worthwhile to consult with a Miami child custody lawyer to assist you so that you can work together for the best interest of your child.