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Can we choose to parent cooperatively after divorce?

Children often suffer emotional and mental duress during the divorce of their parents, but parents can take certain steps to protect the interests of their kids during this difficult time. By working together on a custody plan that allows for continuity of lifestyle and stability, children can maintain strong relationships with both parents.

Joint custody is a popular type of custody arrangement that allows parents to share access to the kids on a regular basis. Children benefit when they can have regular time with both of these crucial figures in their lives, and joint custody can offer them this opportunity. Florida parents may choose to parent cooperatively by drafting a strong, thoughtful joint custody plan.

What should you consider as part of your custody plan?

Child custody is a complicated issue, but one of the most practical ways that parents can avoid problems in the future is to be very clear and thorough in the custody plan. You will find it beneficial to consider every issue from summer vacation schedules to religious upbringing.

If you are considering a joint custody plan or hope to avoid litigation by working on a plan out of court, you must consider both legal custody and physical custody. The differences between these two factors are as follows:

  • Physical custody: Physical custody refers to the actual time that a child will spend with a parent. This includes weekend visitation, holidays, weeknight stays and more.
  • Legal custody: Legal custody involves decision-making authority on behalf of the children, including matters pertaining to education, health care and more.

There is no one-size-fits-all joint custody plan. You can have a joint custody arrangement that provides both parents with equitable parenting time while also sharing legal custody and decision-making authority. However, in many cases, it is best for one parent to retain legal custody while still sharing physical custody with the other parent.

How can I know if it's right for me?

The type of custody plan that is right for you will depend on your ability to work cooperatively with your soon-to-be ex-spouse, your children and other factors unique to your situation. If you wish to explore this option, you would be wise to discuss the benefits of joint custody with an experienced family law attorney.

Sharing custody and parenting cooperatively is a difficult choice, but it may be the best way for you to protect the best interests of your children. Before you make any decision regarding the future of your children, you will find it beneficial to fully understand your parental rights and your legal options.

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Busciglio & Sheridan Law Group
3302 N. Tampa Street
Tampa, FL 33603

Phone: 813-302-1265
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