It is no surprise to readers of this Florida family law blog that people in the United States move with frequency. While it is true that some people will stay in the same community for their entire lives, others may move across the country for better jobs, relationships and other personal reasons. Relocation is not unusual, but it can introduce challenges into the lives of families that must work around custody orders and agreements.
One of the greatest blessings that a Florida resident can experience in life is becoming a parent. Bringing a new life into the world and adopting children are transformative experiences.
Many Florida families count themselves as members of different religions. While some may regularly attend services to celebrate their faiths, others may explore religious teachings on their own. Some families recognize two religious backgrounds when the parents of the families are each of different faiths.
While a divorce severs the legal relationship between two people, it also cuts the ties that bind members of the parties' extended families. For example, a child whose parents go through a divorce may find themselves separated from one side of their family if they are put in the sole physical custody of one parent. When situations such as this occur, it can be very difficult for aunts, uncles, cousins and grandparents to retain their relationships with their loved ones affected by divorce.
While once it may have been more common for one parent to receive physical custody of a child with the other parent receiving visitation time, today, it is often the case that a Florida court will allow both parents to share physical custody of their offspring. Shared or joint physical custody means that both of a child's parents have the right for their child to spend some of their timing living in the parents' homes. When the child is in the custody of a parent, that parent is responsible for the child's welfare.
While it is only February and some parents may be doing everything they can to stay ahead of their kids' practices, recitals, games and classes, others may be looking forward to the months of vacation that their children get at the end of the academic year. Summer break is often a fun time for Florida families, but those who must schedule their vacations and activities around the requirements of their child custody plans may be struggling to find ways to fit in all of the adventures that they want to experience.
Children are born with biological mothers and biological fathers, and while it is straightforward to determine the maternity of a child at the time of birth, paternity is not always as clear. Under the law, certain presumptions grant men paternal rights over children born to their spouses and committed others. However, if there is a question regarding whom a child's father might be, then the Florida courts may order paternity testing to take place.
When a Florida court approves a child custody agreement or promulgates a child custody order, it is effectively setting forth the rules by which the child's parents must live in order to serve the child's best interests. Even when parents follow custody agreements and orders conflicts can arise; in such situations it may be necessary for the parents to go back to court to have their custody plans modified. However, when one parent intentionally ignores the requirements of the custody schedule then the other parent may be at a loss for how to address the situation.
Not that long ago, the only ways that a person could communicate with someone in a remote location was either through letters or by telephone if the parties both had access to telecommunications devices. Now, Floridians can quickly contact friends, family members and work contacts all around the world with the touch of a finger on their smart devices. Technology has made this big world smaller and made it easier for individuals to share with others.
The winter holidays are a special time for many Florida families. They are a time when parents may have days off from work and when kids are away from school, giving adults and children moments to bond and enjoy each other's company. For families affected by divorce, though, the holidays can be a period of stress and confusion if parents have unclear expectations about where their children should be.