Children and Divorce – Parents’ Duties During Divorce
While going through a divorce, parents’ duties during divorce is to strive to conduct themselves to promote a healthy life for their children. In other words, the children’s best interest should come first. In Florida, public policy requires that each child has frequent and regular contact with both parents after a divorce or separation. Additionally, Florida’s public policy encourages the parents to equally share in the rights and responsibilities of raising their children, assuming that this is in the children’s best interest. Lastly, there is no presumption for or against a parent regardless of the parent’s gender. According to Florida law, each parent has an affirmative duty to encourage a positive relationship between the child and the other parent. As such, each parent should ensure that their children have free contact and access with both parents as much as possible.
This means that parents’ duties during divorce is neither not to disrupt the natural development of a positive relationship between the children and the other parent.
Parents should avoid talking about their divorce in the presence of their children. Likewise, parents should make all practical and reasonable efforts to encourage regular communication between the children and the other parent. Neither parent should do anything that would cause the children to become estranged from the other parent or sabotage their opinion about their parent. Both parents should consider all available options to supplement face to face contact between the children and the other parent during and after the divorce proceeding is finalized.
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