St. Petersburg Area Child Custody and Visitation Lawyer Ensures Your Child’s Best Interests
Caring representation for child custody matters
The Law Office of Christina L. Sandvoss, P.A. in St. Petersburg helps clients craft parenting, visitation and support agreements that serve the best interests of their children and fall within the Florida statutes. With more than 18 years of experience in family law, including child custody cases, our attorney and staff provide caring, sensitive representation.
Florida law has made significant changes since October 1, 2008. Florida has taken out the terms “joint custody,” “primary custody” and “physical custody.” The state now establishes a parenting plan to resolve issues in a divorce regarding what was previously termed custody.
When child custody is contested
Child custody battles can be long and difficult. In deciding which parent will have more time-sharing, the court will consider, among other things, the best interests of the child. Some of the questions the court will want to answer include:
- Who has been the primary caregiver?
- Which parent is more likely to be cooperative and provide visitation to the other parent?
- Which parent has a better home and lifestyle to support a child in?
Relocation by the parent with custody may become an issue if that parent wants to move a great distance away. Often, such a move must be approved by the court or can be contested in court by the non-custodial parent.
The Law Office of Christina L. Sandvoss, P.A. works hard to represent your position in a compelling light to the judge, who will make a ruling based on the evidence.
What are the rights of a father?
In the law, “paternity” means “the state of being a father.” Under the law, the father is responsible for supporting the child even when he is not married to the mother. Likewise, the law gives an unmarried or divorced father visitation rights and may even assign the child to the custody of the father. Legal custody refers to the right to share in making important decisions concerning your child, such as decisions about your child’s education, religious practice and medical care.
If you are listed on your child’s birth certificate as the father that may not be enough to establish that you have legal custody or visitation rights. Only a court can give custody and visitation rights to an unmarried father.
In Florida, a paternity case is similar to a divorce case without property or alimony issues. Unmarried parents deal with the same child custody, visitation and child support issues as married parents who divorce do. If paternity is disputed in Florida, it will be determined by a DNA test.
Call now to schedule a free consultation to discuss your child custody and visitation concerns
You can schedule a free 30-minute consultation with our office to discuss your child custody and visitation concerns. Our attorney can explain paternity and visitation rights with you. Located in St. Petersburg, Florida, the Law Office of Christina L. Sandvoss, P.A serves Pinellas, Hillsborough and Manatee counties, including Clearwater, Tampa and Bradenton. Our office is easy to get to and offers ample parking. Call us now at 727-201-0158 or contact us to schedule a convenient time for you to meet.