If you’re a parent who is going through a breakup or divorce, you must be thinking that obtaining sole physical custody is the best option.
While this may be the best option for you – given that your ex-partner or spouse has done something terrible to you – this may not be the best option for your children.
It’s no secret that family courts in Wesley Chapel and elsewhere in Florida prioritize the best interests of the child when handling child custody and parent visitation cases.
But our child visitation attorney at DHW Law warn parents against making hasty decisions when it comes to seeking sole physical custody. After all, unless the other parent is abusive, violent or otherwise a bad parent, it’s in the child’s best interests to be spending time with both parents.
While going for sole physical custody may be tempting, our Wesley Chapel child visitation lawyers advise parents to learn what types of child custody and visitation are available in Florida family laws (there may be a better option for your kid).
What types of child custody are there?
There are two main types of child custody: legal and physical.
A parent with legal custody has the right to make decisions about a child’s upbringing (education, religion, non-emergency medical decisions, etc.).
Sole legal custody refers to only one parent making major decisions on behalf of the child; joint legal custody, meanwhile, means that both parents share the legal authority to make decisions about a child’s upbringing.
A parent with physical custody has the right to live with the child the majority of the time.
A parent with sole physical custody has the child at their place, while a non-custodial parent is allowed to visit the child and even spend nights at the child’s current home.
Parents with joint physical custody split the parenting time equally and the children live with one parent for half of the week, and then with the other parent during the remaining half of the week.
The third type of physical custody in Wesley Chapel is bird’s nest custody, which refers to when the child lives at one location, and the parents take turns to stay at the location, usually splitting their visitation time equally.
Types of child visitation in Wesley Chapel
Once you’ve established what type of child custody is best for your child, our child visitation attorneys at DHW Law say the hardest part is yet to come. And that’s choosing the type of visitation for the non-custodial parent.
There are three types of child visitation: unsupervised, supervised and virtual visitation. Unsupervised is the most popular type of child visitation, yet it may not be a good option if the non-custodial parent has a history of domestic violence, child abuse, alcohol or drug abuse, or other factors that may make him a bad parent.
A parent with unsupervised visitation rights is allowed to have their children at their house or spend time outside of their house (without being supervised by the other parent or a court-ordered designee).
A parent with supervised visitation rights, meanwhile, must be supervised during the duration of the visit. Non-custodial parents typically select individuals to serve as the supervisor (in other cases, courts will appoint a social worker or designee).
With the rise of technology, courts in Wesley Chapel have rolled out the third type of child visitation: virtual visitation, which is held in the form of a video chat between the child and the parent using the Internet.
Only an experienced child visitation attorney can give you an unbiased advice about what type of child custody and visitation would be in the best interests of the child.
Let our child custody attorneys in Wesley Chapel and across Florida to look into your particular case, file papers for a contested or uncontested divorce, and present you with all legal options available to you.