Jacksonville Child Custody Lawyer
At one time, mothers had an advantage in child custody decisions and fathers only rarely prevailed. This is no longer the case. And in addition to the fact that both parents now stand on an equal footing in these issues, courts in Florida and across the nation have begun to recognize the custody and visitation rights of other family members, including grandparents, aunts, uncles, brothers, sisters, cousins, and fathers.
At the Lasky Law Firm, we represent clients on all sides of these issues in the Jacksonville area and throughout northeast Florida. Our Jacksonville child custody lawyers can provide you with high quality legal services and litigation in matters involving:
- Primary custody and joint custody
- Visitation schedules
- Child support
- Grandparent’s rights
- Paternity and father’s rights
- Modification to custody orders
- Chapter 751 cases (temporary custody by extended family members)
Child Custody Determined in Florida
In general, courts will make custody decisions based on the “Best Interest of the Child” standards. Factors that are considered before reaching these decisions include:
- Which parent is most likely to allow open and frequent access to the child by the non-custodial parent and other family members
- Which parent is the better nurturer
- The child’s relationship with the respective parents
- Each parent’s work hours
- The relative stability that each household could provide
We understand the sensitive, emotionally charged nature of child custody issues, and work to help you through this process by being accessible and responsive to your needs and by actively communicating and keeping you informed as the case progresses. Our legal approach is aggressive and designed to protect both your rights and the future that you will share with your children.
At What Age Can a Child Refuse Visitation in Florida?
Legally, a child may not choose which parent they wish to live with until the age of 18. However, the court is always looking to decide custody for whatever scenario is best for the child’s best interests. That said, if the child has a legitimate reason as to which parent they prefer, the court’s opinion may be swayed.
How Does Florida Define an Unfit Parent?
There are several factors that a court will examine when evaluating a parent to be unfit:
- Was there a history of child abuse from the parent?
- Has the parent had a history of substance abuse or alcoholism?
- Does the parent have a mental illness that is prohibiting them from acting out their role as parent?
- Does the living situation present danger to the child?
- Has the parent showed a willingness to be part of the child’s life long-term?
Experienced Jacksonville Child Custody Lawyers
If you already hold primary legal custody of your children and are considering a geographic relocation, new changes in the law may impose certain notification requirements on you before you can complete your move. A Jacksonville child custody attorney from our firm can help you to determine if you must meet these new requirements. We can help you navigate through the process and start your new life off on the right foot.
To discuss a custody-related concern, or to learn more about our practice, contact our Jacksonville child custody lawyers today.