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Florida parenting plan

Modification of Florida child custody order inappropriate as sanction for contempt with no pending petition or finding of best interest

Posted by Nydia Streets of Streets Law in Florida Child Custody

When a party fails to follow a Florida child custody order, he or she can be held in contempt of court. Sanctions may include community service to be performed by the parent not in compliance and make-up time-sharing for the other parent. However, time-sharing cannot be modified as a sanction absent certain factors as stated in the case Andre v. Abreu, 3D17-1747 (Fla. 3d DCA March 27, 2019).

Contempt of Florida child custody order when child refuses to go with other parent during time-sharing exchange

Posted by Nydia Streets of Streets Law in Florida Child Custody

What is a parent supposed to do if a child refuses to go with the other parent during a court-ordered visitation exchange? This situation arose in the case Akre-Deschamps v. Smith, 2D17-4837 (Fla. 2d DCA March 20, 2019) after which the mother was held in contempt when the parties’ daughter refused to board a plane with the father during a time-sharing exchange.

Florida child custody: reversal of contempt order where directives not clear and definite

Posted by Nydia Streets of Streets Law in Florida Child Custody

A parent’s failure to follow a Florida parenting plan may result in that parent being held in contempt of court. But in order to be held in contempt, a final judgment must clearly and definitively direct a party regarding his or her obligations under the order. We see this principle at play in the recent appellate case Cancino v. Cancino, 3D17-601 (Fla. 3d DCA February 13, 2019).

Florida child custody: agreed parenting plans subject to approval by court

Posted by Nydia Streets of Streets Law in Florida Child Custody

Although Florida parenting plans signed by both parents are considered enforceable contracts, they are subject to approval by the court. If a parent raises a concern about a parenting plan after it is signed, but before the court enters an order ratifying the plan, the court must consider the best interest of the child.

Florida child custody: When drug or alcohol addiction is an issue

Posted by Nydia Streets of Streets Law in Florida Child Custody

Drug and/or alcohol abuse can be taken into account in Florida child custody cases. If it is not in the best interest of children to have unsupervised visits with a drug or alcohol addicted parents, the court may order supervised visitation until there is improvement with the parent’s problem. When a parent shows that he or she is managing the addiction, the court can modify a parenting plan, as seen in the case McLendon v. D’Amico, 1D18-2648 (Fla. 1st DCA 2019).

Florida child custody: When a court grants relief not requested in a petition for modification

Posted by Nydia Streets of Streets Law in Florida Child Custody

In order to modify a Florida parenting plan, a party must show a substantial change in circumstances that was not contemplated at the time of entry of the parenting plan. A court has much less discretion in modifying a parenting plan than it does when initially creating one. The main components of Florida parenting plans are timesharing and parental responsibility. In a case in which the mother sought to remove the father’s ultimate decision-making authority concerning extracurricular activities, the court granted more relief than requested by the mother.

Florida child custody: Enforcing ambiguous terms of a Florida parenting plan

Posted by Nydia Streets of Streets Law in Florida Child Custody

The way settlement agreements are worded is a very important part of Florida family law cases. If there is ambiguity in a settlement agreement, this can cause uncertainty, confusion and conflict in enforcement of the terms of an agreement. Take for example the case Wohlberg v. Conner, 234 So.3d 841 (Fla. 4th DCA 2018) in which the parties disagreed regarding the meaning of a part of their parenting plan which controlled timesharing.

Analysis of the standard for modification of a Florida parenting plan

Posted by Nydia Streets of Streets Law in Florida Child Custody

Life is constantly moving and changing. So it is no surprise that parties find the need to modify their Florida parenting plan after it is entered. In order to modify a parenting plan in Florida, a party seeking to do so must show that there has been a substantial change in circumstances which was not contemplated at the time of the final judgment. While this standard may appear clear cut, there is sometimes confusion in what constitutes a substantial change as shown in the recent case Puhl v. Puhl, 4D18-365 (Fla. 4th DCA 2018).

Can your Florida homestead be affected if you do not pay your litigation bills?

Posted by Nydia Streets of Streets Law in Florida Child Custody

The case Seligsohn v. Seligsohn, 4D17-2411 (Fla. 4th DCA 2018) provides an example of a case in which many issues can explode from one final judgment. In this matter, the former wife appealed the following issues meriting discussion: (1) the court’s decision to force a sale of homesteaded property to satisfy debt owed to a guardian ad litem; (2) the court’s decision to award ultimate decision making authority to the former husband over the parties’ children; and (3) the court’s order for the wife to attend parenting courses.

Getting a passport for a child when one parent is absent or refuses to cooperate

Posted by Nydia Streets of Streets Law in Florida Child Custody

Getting a passport for a minor child when you are no longer married to or are not in a relationship with the other parent is a concern many parents have in Florida child custody cases. Depending on who is listed on the child’s birth certificate, you may be able to get a passport issued without the other parent’s participation.

Allowable sanctions for contempt of a Florida child custody order

Posted by Nydia Streets of Streets Law in Florida Child Custody

When a parent fails to follow a parenting plan, is found in contempt and still fails to follow the plan, what is a court to do? One appellate case talks about what a court is not allowed to do when sanctioning the non-compliant parent.

Procedure: Standard for awarding attorneys' fees for bad faith conduct

Posted by Nydia Streets of Streets Law in Florida Child Custody

Sometimes even after a Florida parenting plan is entered, problems can arise when the parties disagree as to the interpretation of certain provisions of the plan. Such was the case in Greene v. Greene, 1D17-2120 (Fla. 1st DCA 2018) where the disagreement escalated to the point that the police were called multiple times. In some cases, the court can award attorneys’ fees to the offending party, but a certain standard must be met before doing so.

Recent Florida case expands fathers' rights

Posted by Nydia Streets of Streets Law in Florida Divorce

In what could be viewed as a turning point in Florida law on fathers' child custody rights, the Florida Supreme Court recently issued a decision which grants standing to unmarried fathers to establish paternity despite the objection of the mother of the child and her husband. The case Simmonds v. Perkins, SC17–1963 (Fla. 2018) may give hope to fathers who show a vested interest in being a part of their children's lives. 

Long-distance parenting plans in Florida child custody cases

Posted by Nydia Streets of Streets Law in Child Custody

Long-distance Florida parenting plans come into play when one parent resides out-of-state or more than 50 miles from the children's primary residence. In the case Aranda v. Padilla, 216 So.3d 652 (Fla. 4th DCA 2017), the appellate court considered a trial court's ruling on a father's request for holiday time-sharing, assistance with travel costs to effectuate time-sharing and shared parental responsibility in a long-distance parenting plan.

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Florida parenting plans: Don't forget these clauses!

By Nydia Streets of Streets Law posted in Child Custody on January 19, 2016

If you are involved in a Miami child custody case, chances are you’ve heard about a parenting plan.  A Florida parenting plan is essentially a blueprint you and the other parent of your child ideally will follow in raising your child in separate homes. This plan can be created by the court, or even better, created through the agreement of the parents.  Today we discuss some basic parenting plan elements so that you can get the ball rolling on creating a strategy for child-rearing success.

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