What You Need for a Florida Parenting Agreement

On behalf of The Law Office of Wickersham and Bowers posted in Family Law on Thursday October 01, 2020.

Sometimes called a custody agreement, a parenting agreement outlines how parents will share the rights and responsibilities of raising their children. This agreement also establishes a time-sharing schedule, a schedule of days and times for both parents to spend an equal amount of time with their children. In a trial for child support and/or custody, each parent submits a proposed plan and a judge reviews the proposal and creates the final agreement based on what is best for the child.  There are different types of agreements and choosing the right plan depends on the needs to be met for the child. 

Types of Agreements

It’s important to know what type of parenting agreement you need for your child. There are four different types of parenting agreements:

  • Basic Agreements are ideal for co-parents cooperating willingly with one another.
  • Long Distance Agreements are recommended for cooperating co-parents who live more than 50 miles from each other.
  • Highly Structured Agreements are for co-parents prone to frequent disagreements that require mediator or lawyer interventions, or mandated parenting cooperation.
  • Safety Focused Agreements allow a parent-child relationship, but are for cases where the children or parents are at risk for violence, abuse (to include substance abuse), or criminal activities; time sharing is strictly monitored or sometimes denied and this type of agreement also sets guidelines on physical discipline, firearms, parents’ substance use, and other persons allowed around the child.    

Creating Your Parenting Plan

You want a detailed parenting plan that contains all the required information. The more detailed your plan the more effective the final agreement will be. Your proposed parenting plan must address the following:

  • How parental rights, responsibilities, and child care tasks will be shared. 
  • How decisions relating to education, medical (to include dental care), and childcare will be divided.
  • How time-sharing will be divided. 
  • How transportation and child exchanges will work.
  • How parents will communicate with each other.
  • How children will communicate with the other parent during time-sharing.
  • How changes to the plan and schedules will be handled.
  • How conflicts related to the parenting plan and parenting time will be resolved.

How the schedule will develop through time and as the child ages. 

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