In previous decades when parents divorced, it was often assumed that the mother should retain custody of the children. However, fathers today are more involved in the lives of their kids and Florida courts factor this into their child custody decisions. Yet, it often seems like courts still show favoritism to mothers in custody hearings. Courts will use several factors to make unbiased decisions when it comes to child custody.
The best interests of the child
In Florida, fathers typically have the same rights as mothers. When making custody decisions, courts will use what is known as the best interests of the child standard. Under this standard, the parent who is the best equipped to care for and make decisions for the children will be awarded full custody. Courts will also examine the parent-child relationships.
Since the mother usually nurtures the children through their toddler years, the bond between mother and child is often very strong. This is not necessarily a reflection on fathers, but rather a result of traditional parenting roles. Fortunately, courts today realize that it is in the children’s best interest to spend time with both parents. Moreover, joint legal custody is awarded in most situations. Even if the mother is awarded primary physical custody, the father can still expect to have significant parenting time with his children.
Legal assistance with custody matters
These days, the parent’s gender is not considered in any child custody decision. The parent who is best able to care for and support the children’s well-being will win custody. Those who have questions or want to learn more about child custody in Florida could get help by sitting down with an experienced legal professional. A knowledgeable family law attorney can help clients understand laws and determine the best path forward.