Florida Child Custody and Proving Paternity

Monday, January 7, 2019

Written by Norman A. Green

Categories: Family Law Paternity

Comments: 0

Florida Child Custody and Proving Paternity

Florida Child Custody and Proving Paternity

In child custody cases, judges often make their decisions based on what is in the best interests of the child. However, they also have to consider what the laws of their state are in order to adhere to those requirements as well. For example, Florida courts prefer to have parents share custody unless shared custody would be harmful to the child. If shared custody is not appropriate, by Florida law “the court must give equal consideration to both the mother and father when deciding which parent will have primary residential custody.”

“Parents are bound by the custody order once it’s been signed by the judge and filed with the court clerk. Any changes that are requested will require that parents show the court that a major change has occurred which will affect the child’s life detrimentally if not addressed. If this situation has happened, an experienced family law attorney can help parents by explaining all legal options and representing the parent(s) in court to get the requested changes made,” said Norman Green, Senior Partner at Green & Metcalf of Vero Beach, FL.

However, before child custody cases are addressed, proving paternity is often a consideration as well. In Florida, paternity can be proven by marriage, acknowledgment by the father, genetic testing and court order. It can also be proven when the parents marry after the child is born and update the child's birth record.

“Once paternity is proven, the court takes into account many factors when deciding child support, which is calculated based on parents’ income and guidelines set in place to allow for meeting financial responsibilities with as little financial hardship as possible,” Green said.

Norman A. Green is the founder and a partner of Green & Metcalf - Attorneys At Law. He has over 40 years of experience in the practice fields of criminal defense and family law (divorce, child custody, child support, paternity, modifications of existing orders, prenuptial agreements and alimony cases).

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