One of the most litigious aspects of a Florida divorce is establishing the proper timesharing schedule between minor children and the parents. Often times, the parties in a divorce case are able to come to an agreement on a parenting plan which encompasses the terms and conditions regarding parental responsibility and timesharing. In almost every divorce action it should be the parties' goal to reach a settlement regarding visitation issues and remove the cost and stress family law litigation can have on the parties. In order to reach a settlement on timesharing however, both parties must establish a visitation schedule that details the weekly, monthly, and holiday timesharing for the children of a Florida divorce.
While a settlement is always preferred, the reality of divorce litigation is that a settlement cannot always be reached. In the event the parties cannot come to an amicable resolution each must have a complete understanding of what lies ahead. Ultimately, at a final hearing the court will make the determination of the timesharing schedule and will make its ruling based on the child or children's best interest.
The Florida family law statutes provide a series of statutory elements that the court must weigh when addressing the best interests of the minor children. The evidence each party intends to present the court should relate to the statutory elements governing timesharing and should establish for the court why the evidence supports his or her request for a particular timesharing arrangement. Because a Florida custody trial can be the most challenging aspect of the divorce it is highly recommend that each party speak with their Tampa divorce attorney in order to gain a complete understanding of the statutory factors and procedures that they will face especially if a custody settlement cannot be achieved.