50/50 Time-Sharing Close to Becoming Law
If a divorcing couple has children, a number of disputes could arise regarding child custody, visitation rights, and child support payments. If you are involved in such disagreements, the Sutton Law Firm can help. With offices in Lakeland, St. Petersburg, and Bartow, FL, Debra J. Sutton can review your case and let you know the next step to ensure your child’s best interests are met.
Many divorcing couples share parenting time with their children. A new law could require couples to have 50/50 time-sharing with their kids. Let’s go over the basics of this Florida state law in the making and how it could affect your current time spent with your children. We’ll also note why it’s important to have a family law attorney on your side during any child custody disagreement.
Current Time-Sharing Policy in Florida
Florida’s public policy has favored children of divorce or separation continuing to have reasonable and frequent time sharing with their parents but stopped short of mandating or preferring an equal schedule between parents. There has not been a preference in favor of one parent or another and, ordinarily, one parent receives more time-sharing and the other parent something less than 50 percent.
While the Courts and families have been permitted to fashion more than an alternating weekend schedule, reaching an equal time-sharing schedule was a stretch.
About Senate Bill 1796
Senate Bill 1796 may become law effective July 1st, updating many of Florida’s statutes pertaining to family law.
Part of SB 1796 creates for the first time a presumption that equal time-sharing with the children is in their best interests. That means co-parents would split the same amount of time with their children over the course of the year.
This presumption of 50/50 time could be overcome if it can be shown that such a schedule would not operate in the children’s best interests. However, demonstrating this is not easy and is a change modifying the burden of proof from that customarily recognized.
How SB 1796 Could Affect You
The Court’s discretion to fashion a time-sharing schedule may become more limited and the ability to show detriment a challenge that will require experienced legal assistance and case evaluation.
How Our Family Law Attorneys Can Help
The lawyers at Sutton Law Firm can offer advice on your rights regarding the time-sharing schedule of the children in your family related to time-sharing reform. This insight can help you get ready for changes in your existing time-sharing arrangement, or help build a case as to why you deserve to spend more time with your child.
Schedule a Consultation at the Sutton Law Firm
If you are dealing with divorce and have children with your former spouse, it’s important to have legal counsel on your side. We can be an advocate for your child’s best interests as well as your needs as a parent. To learn more about how our divorce and family law attorneys can help, please call our law firm at (863) 533-8912 or contact us online.