If you are a high net worth parent considering a divorce, you are probably worried about how the case will affect your children and the time you spend with them. The first thing to know regarding child custody laws and practices in Florida is that child custody is also known as:
- time sharing - the schedule of when each parent is with the children
- parental responsibility - the decision-making authority on behalf of the kids
A negotiated agreement regarding time sharing gives you more control in drafting the details of your agreement together. The provisions can include the time sharing schedule and allocation of parental responsibility over essential aspects of your children's lives, such as education, exposure to religion, and health care. However, when the former spouses are having difficulties in reaching an agreement, the matter will be battled out in court, where it is essential to enlist the help of an experienced Florida high net worth divorce attorney to negotiate the specifics of a new plan.
Modifying a Child Custody Order in Florida Courts
Changing an order for time sharing can prove difficult in most cases, as frequent and significant transformations in the lives of young children can shake the foundation of stability they grew up with and worsen an already stressful situation. Therefore, Florida courts will typically modify a high net worth divorce child custody order under several specific circumstances:
- When both parents agree to adjust their time sharing agreement to benefit them and their children, above all. All modifications to existing child custody orders in Florida must go back to court to be regulated.
- Any time sharing modification requires proving there has been a "substantial, material, and unanticipated change of circumstances" since the last order. Furthermore, it also requires showing that the modification is in the child's best interest.
- When a final judgment of injunction for protection against domestic violence has been entered against one of the parents, the other parent may be awarded sole custody until the injunction is lifted.
If either parent wants to make a modification to an existing custody agreement, they can petition for a change in Florida courts but need to provide a valid and substantial reason for doing so. Several examples of potential modifications include:
- the child living in a potentially dangerous environment
- one parent's intention to relocate out of state
- job changes that don't allow the parent to see the child regularly
- changes in the child's needs (education, extracurricular activities)
- a shift in a parent's situation (deteriorating health, criminal conviction)
Florida courts believe in the necessity of children having regular and uninterrupted contact with both parents unless there are strong arguments to deviate from that. While an equitable time sharing agreement is the main objective, the particulars depend on circumstances like the age of the children, parental work calendars, and other such family factors. In emergency situations when a child is in imminent danger of neglect or abuse, the time sharing order can be modified without a full hearing (ex parte).
The Law Offices of Sean M. Cleary Vigorously Advocates for You and Your Children During a Florida High Net Worth Divorce
Since child custody is a top concern in most high asset divorces, The Law Offices of Sean M. Cleary will make it one of its highest priorities. Having solid legal representation during a high asset divorce is vital, as an attorney specializing in this area of expertise will not only help protect your assets, but also obtain the child custody changes that you seek.
The Law Offices of Sean M. Cleary, with its skilled legal team, have represented many clients seeking modifications of child custody in Florida.
We are committed to the successful resolution of all our clients' cases and strive to deliver exceptional results for your high net worth divorce.