Child custody disputes are understandably emotional for parents. At stake is your right to maintain a loving relationship with your child. Unfortunately, the traditional approach to litigation pits one parent against the other in an adversarial process, damaging their ability to work cooperatively for the good of their children. At Tia E. Jensen, P.A., I take a different approach. With specific education and training in child development and co-parenting, I believe in a personalized approach that addresses your child as an individual. Although I know there is a time for aggressive litigation, I also know from more than 20 years of experience that alternative forms of dispute resolution, such as mediation or collaboration, are more appropriate for most families. Through these nontraditional processes, parents avoid placing their children at the center of a controversy. Parents not only resolve their conflicts; they also rebuild the trust necessary to make their parenting plan work smoothly for the good of their children.
In 2011, Florida adopted new language for discussing what used to be called legal custody and physical custody. Today, when we talk about the parents’ legal relationship to their minor children, there are two categories of rights:
Courts generally favor shared parental responsibility and a parenting time schedule that affords each parent frequent, meaningful contact with the child. However, there may be grounds for awarding sole parental responsibility to one parent and for limiting a parent’s contact with the child.
The most common reason for a child custody dispute is divorce. For a divorce to be finalized, parents must either negotiate a parenting plan or litigate the issue before a judge. If both parents are sound, responsible, and engaged in their children’s lives, litigation is generally unnecessary. The parents can mediate the issue or settle the issue as part of their collaborative divorce process. When you visit my office for your free consultation, we can discuss your circumstances and which approach to dispute resolution is most appropriate for you.
Not every child custody dispute is part of a divorce proceeding. Other issues that arise include:
To best serve a client’s specific needs, my legal services are available without a retainer. If you only need my assistance for brief advice or limited tasks, you pay a low hourly rate for my work.
Tia E. Jensen, P.A. provides professional and respectful child custody representation with an emphasis on parental cooperation. To learn how you can resolve your child custody dispute with less stress and expense, schedule a free consultation. Call today at 941-330-9600 or contact my Sarasota office online. My office is conveniently located in the Ringling Professional Center, 2831 Ringling Blvd.