Time-sharing (Custody) and the Parenting Plan
Time-sharing refers to what was formerly called custody, a term that has now been done away with in the state of Florida. One parent can have majority time-sharing or both parents can have equal time-sharing, but generally, both parents are entitled to share their children’s time.
How time is shared has a significant impact on a few different things, child support being one of the most important. Child support is calculated using the Child Support Guidelines Worksheet and is based on each party’s percentage time-sharing (overnights), their income, health insurance, and costs of daycare and uncovered medical expenses. The more time the person ordered to pay child support has with the child, the less he or she has to pay.
The time-sharing schedule is included in the parenting plans. A parenting plan outlines how the parents will raise their children and is required in family cases involving minor children. The parenting plan addresses all of the traditionally important things like regular time-sharing, holiday time-sharing, extra-curricular activities, education, child care, how both parents will contact each other, how both parents will contact the children and out-of-state/country travel. The parenting plan also addresses anything that is uniquely important to a particular family.
Once the parenting plan is approved by the court and time-sharing is ordered, it can be challenging to make changes to it. In seeking a modification, the petitioning party has to show that there has been a substantial change in circumstances and that the requested modification would be in the best interest of the child. The standard sounds simple enough, but it is far more than its simple phrasing.
A time-sharing schedule and parenting plans should be carefully considered. At Smith & Eulo Law Firm, our family attorney can help you create a specialized time-sharing schedule and parenting plan that fits your unique situation and family.