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Can I file a motion to compel summer timesharing in FL the absent the presence of a court order regarding custody?

Niceville, FL |

I'm In The Middle Of Custody Litigation In Fl. We've Never Been Married Or Through Court, But Paternity Has Been Recognized And Established. Mother Wants An Increase In Child Support In Order To Give Me Summer Timesharing While We Continue To Negotiate The Official Parenting Plan And Await A Hearing Specifically To Determine Any Additional Child Support That Is Warranted. Can I File A Motion To Compel Summer Timesharing According To The Official FL Family Law Revised Timesharing Plan In This Case?

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Attorney answers 3


It is not clear whether you are currently in court or not or what kinds of actions/orders are outstanding, so it is really not possible to answer this question. Some of the things you are saying have occurred do not compute legally.

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Hi heather, Sorry to not be clear and thank you for the response. There are no current orders in place. We are establishing custody on a 9 y/o who has only lived with her mother. While I have been involved in both visitation and child support, we live in different states and have never officially had any hearings where custody was established until last year. The mother and step-father were facing marital issues and asked if I could take my daughter for a while while they worked it out. During this time, many things came to light of a very concerning nature and I began to pursue emergengy temporary custody in TN. Unfortunately, it was found that jurisdiction belonged to FL and in absence of a court order, custody defaults to her mother. I then filed for emergency temporary custody in FL, which was denied due to not serving adequate notice of hearing. (Mother was out of town for a conveniently long period of time. We have been through mediation which was partially successful. We did not agree on a few issues which we planned to have the judge decide. During the waiting period between mediation and our yet to occur hearing, we tried to hash out some things ourselves to no avail. The mother has loosely followed the non-official parenting plan we agreed to. Between October and now, my financial circumstances have changed for the worse and now, even though I've offered to keep the voluntary support I pay at the level I'm at currently instead of less, she wants more and has reneged on our unofficial agreement for summer timesharing because she is not receiving more money even though I can't afford it right now. My question is that since there is not a current court order for custody or child support, can I, with any likelihood of success file a motion to compel summer visitation that is in line with the standard shared parenting plan of FL when the parents are separated by a large geographical distance, which is, to my understanding, half the summer, plus two weeks since I can't exercise every other weekend during the year? Also, I've always handled 100% of the travel costs related to visitation.

Heather Morcroft

Heather Morcroft


It sounds like what you need to do is file a motion for temporary relief, and get a temporary visitation schedule in place until you can have a final hearing. Mom is not going to get anywhere trying to condition visitation on payment of child support, and will irritate the judge by trying to do so.


I agree with Heather. You need to have a temporary matters hearing soon. You should also get to mediation as soon as you can.

R. Jason de Groot, Esq., 386-337-8239


Is the Department of Revenue the party that brought suit to establish paternity and a child support order? If so and there has been no other actions, you will need to initiate your own action to establish a time-sharing plan and work out parental responsibilities. You should consult with a local family law attorney. If you cannot afford to hire an attorney, most courts have a pro se family law coordinator program to assist citizens in moving forward through the court system. These programs cannot offer legal advise but they can provide legal forms and help you schedule your hearings.

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