In Florida, what can be filed when the father's paternity rights have been established, and when trying to serve the mother with a petition to modify (to get time-sharing rights as none were ordered in the paternity order) the other has left the address produced to the judge.
The judge denied a motion for a child pick-up order (father has no rights to request), the Florida Statute for relocation (again he has no current rights) and only granted a motion to compel her address which obviously has no legal effect as it cannot be served.
A skip trace was done but no current address can be found. What should be filed at this point besides a motion asking for contempt?
According to your question it sounds as if paternity was established previously along with a current timesharing schedule and child support was set, correct? If so then you would need to apply for a modification of timesharing based on a substantial and unanticipated change in circumstances. This can be difficult depending on your circumstances. Her hiding from service of process is another separate issue. Speak to a local attorney regarding your timesharing modification and the reasons for it to see whether you have a decent chance of getting a modification in the first place. If you do, you can proceed and serve process on her through publication and by filing an affidavit regarding your search for her address, contact info, and whereabouts. There are very specific requirements though and you would need to consult with an attorney.
If however, you are not able to participate currently in the timesharing arrangement that was originally ordered then you would be able to file an enforcement action and serve her with process the same way i discussed above (by publication). You would need to provide more details and definitely need to hire an attorney to address this situation with you because it can become quite complicated. Feel free to email myself and check out my site. www.divorcememike.com. my email: [email protected]
The answering of this question is not and does not create and Attorney Client relationship, nor should it be construed as legal advice regarding your specific situation. Please contact a Florida Licensed Attorney such as myself in order to retain our services, enter into an Attorney Client relationship, and receive legal advice regarding your specific situation..
It sounds like a DOR/CSE case determined you are the father and set child support but there was never a parenting plan / timesharing schedule ordered. (The first attorney's answer above was correct only if there already was a timesharing plan before, which we both were unsure of.) Also sounds as if you both were never married.
You cannot file a motion for contempt since timesharing orders have not ever been determined or filed yet. You do not try to modify either since there is no timesharing plan to modify, just child support. In Florida, the mother is the natural guardian of the children for unmarried parents until a petition to determine paternity/parenting plan is filed. The father has no rights as you said until a court case is filed. Then the father has an equal opportunity to have the children on his timesharing plan as much as the mother (the court cannot favor the mother more than the father). A parenting plan and timesharing schedule would be determined by a list of 20 factors (see F.S. 61.13).
You may not be able to file in Florida with jurisdiction if she moved and lived in another state for over six months with the children because the new state would have jurisdiction over children's custody and timesharing. If you had to file for custody in her new state you just have to keep on searching for her until you find her. Private investigators are very helpful and could find her. However, if you do not know where she lives then you could file a Paternity case that determines the children's timesharing schedule in Florida, publish her notice in the newspaper after performing a diligent search, and then have the trial where you would be the only party/parent appearing, most likely, and you would then have a court order giving you some type of timesharing. You could then enforce that order in other states when you did find her and it would be up to her to file something in court if she thought Florida did not have jurisdiction and she would have to prove it. In the Florida case you could ask that the court suspend any passports for the children and if granted that could force her to appear back in Florida to change the passport order if she wanted to cruise or vacation out of the USA.
Sign up to receive a 5-part series of useful information and advice about child custody law.
Our Rating is calculated using information the lawyer has included on their profile in addition to the information we collect from state bar associations and other organizations that license legal professionals. Attorneys who claim their profiles and provide Avvo with more information tend to have a higher rating than those who do not.
Years licensed, work experience, education
Peer endorsements, associations, awards
Publications, speaking engagements