When Florida residents decide upon a child custody agreement, much more goes into it than simply deciding legal and physical custody. While Florida is compliant with guidelines found in The Uniform Child-Custody Jurisdiction and Enforcement Act handed down by the U.S. Department of Justice, there is much more that is left to the state to rule on when deciding upon the best interests of the minor or minors.
Oftentimes, a parenting plan is necessary to ensure that all day-to-day details are also covered. This is especially necessary when more than one party will have some level of custody, which can leave a lot of gray areas and potential conflict down the road if not outlined in writing.
While the parenting plan may touch upon some of the big picture pieces of the custody agreement, Florida Statutes declare that there are a few items that must be included in order for it to be accepted by the family court. These include:
- Holidays, birthdays and other milestones. The plan should outline where the child or children will be and how this will affect the general custody visitation schedule.
- Health-related care. This includes payments for medical insurance, visits to a physician, who has the right to make health care decisions, prescription costs and may even include who will stay home with a child on a sick day.
- Daily tasks. These might include items such as who drops off and picks up for school, who takes care of child care or who provides transportation to and from extracurricular activities as well as costs attached with them.
- Communication. This outlines the methods of communication that will be used between parents and children such as phone calls, emails or other technology that might be considered. It may also detail when the communication can be made and for how long.
A parenting plan can also include agreements regarding how travel will be handled when the child or children are included as well as business travel that temporarily disrupts the regular schedule.