Matthew Lane & Associates, P.A.
Palm Beach Gardens, West Palm Beach And Wellington, Florida Offices 561-328-1095

Modification of Child Custody & Visitation Archives

Modification of Child Custody and Visitation in Wellington, FL

Modification of Child Custody and Visitation will only be granted where there is a substantial, unanticipated, material, change in circumstances and where a modification is in the best interests of the children. In D.M.J v. A.J.T a final judgment was entered by the trial court in 2011. A parenting plan was incorporated into the final judgment. The parenting plan provided that when the parties' child was old enough to attend kindergarten the parents would decide where the child should go to school. If the parties were unable to decide, the matter was supposed to be mediates. Four years later, the mother alleged in her supplemental petition for modification of timesharing that the father had moved 25 miles from where he lived when the final judgment was entered. The mother alleged that this created a substantial change in circumstances that warranted a modification of timesharing. The Mother requested additional timesharing, increased child support, a designation as the ultimate decision maker for issues involving the child's education. The trial court granted the Mother's supplemental petition. The father appealed the trial court's order.

Modification of Child Custody and Visitation in Jupiter, Florida

Modification of child custody and visitation orders require a substantial, material change of circumstances since the Court's prior custody decision. Additionally, the movant must demonstrate that the children's best interest justify a change in custody. In Chamberlain v. Eisinger, the Florida Court of Appeal had a case before it in which a judgment was entered in Maryland.  The Maryland trial court gave the Mother custody of the four children. After the divorce was granted the Father moved to Florida. In 2008, the Mother and Father agreed that the Father would have custody of the oldest daughter. In 2009, the Mother and Father agreed that the Mother would have custody of the youngest daughter and the two sons. In 2010, the Mother moved to Florida. The same month that the Mother moved to Florida, the trial court in Maryland entered a new order specifying times and dates for visitation. However, the new order was based upon the premise that the Mother and the younger children were living in Maryland.

Modification of Child Custody and Visitation

HiRes.jpgIn a modification of child custody and visitation case, where the parties were originally awarded shared parental responsibility, the parties must attempt to confer and agree before major decisions are made. In Dickson v. Dickson, the Florida Court of Appeal recently stated that if the parties are unable to agree on a significant issue affecting their children's helath, safety, welfare or schooling, the parties must obtain a determination of the court before they take unilateral action. In Dickson v. Dickson the final judgment of dissolution gave the parties shared parental responsibility on major decisions, including educational matters. Under the concept of shared parental responsibility, major decisions affecting the welfare of a child are to be made after the parents confer and reach an agreement. In the event that the parents are unable to agree, the dispute should be presented to the court for resolution. The selection of a child's school is a major decision.

Modification of Child Custody & Visitation in Jupiter, Florida

In a modification of child custody and visitation proceeding, must the parties file Financial Affidavits.  In a modification of child custody and visitation proceeding that involves a modification of child support, it is mandatory to file financial affidavits. In Gilroy v. Gilroy, the Former Husband, sought review of the supplemental final judgment of dissolution of marriage that modified timesharing and child support based primarily on his relocation to Arizona. The Court of Appeal reversed the child support award based on the erroneous denial of the Former Husband's request for a continu­ance at the final hearing. The remainder of the supplemental final judgment was affirmed. The parties divorced in 2007. At that time, they entered into a mediation agreement that awarded the Wife primary residential responsibility over the parties' minor children with the Former Husband having significant timesharing. The agreement required the Former Husband to pay monthly child support. The Former Husband filed a supplemental petition for modification of child support. In 2012, the parties entered into another agreement in which child support was modified so that the Former Husband paid nothing.

Modification of Child Custody & Visitation in Jupiter, Florida

In a Modification of Child Custody & Visitation proceeding, Courts are required to keep in mind the fact that a parent has a constitution­ally protected right to a meaningful relationship with his or her children and timesharing privileges should not be denied to either parent as long as the parent conducts himself or herself, while in the presence of the children, in a manner which will not adversely affect the children. In Fay v. Fay, the Florida Court of Appeal recently stated that in order for any restrictions or limitations on custody and visitation to be put into effect by the court, there must be there must be compe­tent, substantial evidence in the record that these restrictions are in the best interests of the children before those restrictions will be sustained. It is the court's responsibility to ensure that an appropriate relationship is maintained between parents and their children, and that responsibility cannot be abdicated to any parent or expert. The trial court cannot delegate its authority to another person to rule on the custody and visitation details. A parent's visitation rights may not be conditioned on the payment of the parent's financial obligations.

Modification of Child Custody & Visitation in Jupiter, FL

In a modification of child custody & visitation proceeding, there is no requirement that the change in circumstances be involuntary in order to modify time-sharing. In Wilks v. Cronin the Florida Court of Appeal recently stated: "The former husband, Brian Wilks, appeals the Order Granting Former Wife's Motion To Dismiss rendered follow­ing an evidentiary hearing. 

Modification of Child Custody & Visitation in Palm Beach County, Florida

In order to modify custody there must be an unanticipated, substantial and material change in circumstances, it must be in the child's best interests, and the trial court should consider the 61.13 factors. In Straney v. Floethe, the Florida Court of Appeal stated...

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Palm Beach Gardens Office
The Financial Center at the Gardens
3801 PGA Boulevard
Suite 600
Palm Beach Gardens, Florida 33410

Phone: 561-328-1095
Fax: (561) 472-1568
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Wellington Office
Wellington Reserve
1035 South State Road 7
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Wellington, Florida 33414

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West Palm Beach Office
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West Palm Beach, Florida 33401

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