Your Willingness to Facilitate a Relationship with the other Parent
Time Sharing FactorIf you have a minor child during a family law case, the court will order a parenting plan and determine what time sharing schedule you will have with the child. When determine custody, it is always in your child's best interest for you and the other parent to settle the dispute and come to an agreement regarding what time sharing schedule each parent is going to have going forward. However, this doesn't always happen. Sometimes parents are unable to come to a time sharing agreement. When that happens, the court is forced to make the decision for you. When determine what time sharing schedule each parent will have with the minor child, the court must analyze the custody factors that are set forth in the Florida Statutes.
The ContentThe first factor is what some consider to be the most important factor. The Florida legislature has indicated this is the first factor the court must analyze. The first custody factor states that the court must hear evidence regarding the following:
The demonstrated capacity and disposition of each parent to facilitate and encourage a close and continuing parent-child relationship, to honor the time-sharing schedule, and to be reasonable when changes are required.
The judge will want to hear testimony regarding your demonstrated ability to facilitate and encourage a relationship with the other parent. The judge will want to hear testimony that you have honored any previous time sharing schedule and the judge will want to hear testimony that you have been reasonable when changes are required.
EvidenceThe family law court is going to want to hear that you and the other parent are able to put aside your differences and put the children's best interest ahead of your own. The best way to show this to the court is to show the judge that you are doing whatever you can to encourage the relationship between the child and the other parent. Send the other parent photos. Make sure the other parent has adequate time sharing. Make sure your children are buying birthday presents for the other parent, Christmas presents, etc. Do not speak ill of the other parent in front of the child. Make sure the child calls the other parent at the regularly scheduled time. This is an important factor and one that can be a disadvantage to you if you are not doing what you can to facilitate a relationship with the other parent.