Parents may have anxiety about child custody during the divorce process or in other circumstances. They may wonder what different types of child custody arrangements are possible and may want to know what child custody arrangements are common in Florida. This blog recently discussed child custody modifications and the impact of a potential relocation on a child custody arrangement. Because of the strong feelings commonly associated with child custody, it is helpful to understand the basics of child custody arrangements.
Child custody can be a contentious issue that may lead to disputes and parents may even become engaged in a child custody battle. To help avoid difficult child custody battles and minimize uncertainty, parents should be familiar with what child custody arrangements can look like. Physical custody is what most parents think of when child custody is discussed. Physical custody refers to where the child lives. While one parent may have physical custody of the child, joint child custody arrangements are common.
In Florida, joint child custody arrangements are referred to as time-sharing arrangements. Time-sharing agreements involve shared custody in which one parent has physical custody of the child and the other enjoys significant visitation with the child. When possible, time-sharing agreements are preferred in Florida because they give the child a substantial amount of interaction with both parents. In some circumstances, sole custody may be appropriate as another option.
Legal custody is also important to understand and joint legal custody is common. Legal custody refers to decision-making for the child such as decisions concerning schooling, religion and medical care. Child custody arrangements require continuing management so it is important that the couple achieves a workable child custody agreement. Doing so, and understanding child custody options up front, is a way the family law process helps couples avoid child custody battles and achieve a workable child custody arrangement.
Source: Family FindLaw, “The Various Types of Child Custody,” Accessed June 13, 2016