Jacksonville Child Custody & Child Support Attorney
Jacksonville Child Custody and Support Firm Serving, Duval, Clay, Nassau, St. Johns, Flagler and Baker Counties
Whether a child is born to a married couple or two people who have not taken that formal step, we look out for our client’s best interests. Support matters and time spent with your children can become complicated legal issues and contentious personal matters. At our firm, the children come first. Their emotional and financial needs must be met regardless of how their parents feel about each other.
At our firm, we are seeing more parents who are not married and, as such, they lack the rights that married couples enjoy. Fathers come to us after being contacted by the Florida Department of Revenue. Their paternity of the minor child is established along with their monthly child support obligation for the child. However, while these fathers have the legal obligation to provide financial support for their child, they have no legal rights to visitation or custody of the child. Conversely, mothers need financial assistance from fathers who want to have visitation, but do not see the need to provide the much-needed financial support for their child.
There is too much at stake not to have a written agreement that is enforceable by the Court for child custody and support. Biological fathers, whether married to the mother or not when their child was born, run the risk of losing their driver’s license as well as their professional licenses should they fail to pay court-ordered child support. Mothers need to protect their rights and seek formal custody and support arrangements for their children’s benefit
It was not that long ago that mothers possessed a distinct advantage over fathers in issues involving child custody and fathers only rarely prevailed. The good news is that this is no longer the case as the legislature and the Courts have shifted to a more gender neutral position when deciding which parent should be the primary residential parent of the minor children.
In addition to the fact that now both parents stand on an equal footing on child custody issues, the Florida Courts are beginning to recognize the custody and visitation rights of other family members such as grandparents, aunts, uncles, brothers and sisters.
At the law firm of Daniel M. Copeland, Attorney at law, P.A., we represent clients on all sides of child custody issues. Our firm is able to provide you with high quality legal services, negotiation and litigation services in the following matters:
- Primary custody and joint custody;
- Visitation schedules;
- Child Support;
- Grandparent’s rights; Paternity and father’s rights;
- Modification to custody orders;
- Temporary custody by extended family members.
In Florida, the standard that our Courts will apply in making a determination of child custody is based on “The Best Interests of the Child.” The factors that a Court is required by statute to apply in making a child custody determination are:
- 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 (it’s not always the mother);
- The child’s relationship with the respective parents;
- Each parent’s work schedule;
- The relative stability that each household could provide to the child.
All of us at the firm fully understand the sensitive, emotionally charged nature of child custody matters and will assist you in working through this process. We will do this by being accessible and responsive to your questions and concerns; actively communicate any developments in your case and keep you fully informed as your case moves through the process.
We never lose sight of the fact that you are our client and that you set the mission. Our legal approach is aggressive but does not alienate the other side. Alienation of the other side only serves to prolong the final resolution of your case and to drive up the costs of litigation.
If you are a custodial parent and are considering relocation more than 50 miles from your current location, please carefully review our section “Relocation With Minor Children.”
If you are considering a modification of a current child custody order or relocation with your minor child or children, give us a call and we will fully explain the process to you and the statutory requirements of your issue.