When the court makes any decisions about parenting plans or child custody, it does so based on the best interests of the child. Defining what this is can be tricky since you or your former spouse may disagree on what is best for your children. 

The Florida Statutes explains that the court considers several points when making a determination of the best interests of a child in such a situation. 

Existing relationships 

The current relationship you have with your child is important to the court in establishing custody because the court will want to know more about which parent provides care for the children and who the children feel a closer bond with. The court will consider how both of you relate to your child and the impact you have on his or her daily life. 

Shared responsibilities 

Any parenting plan the court approves should allow for the sharing of responsibilities by both parents. You both need to have the chance to make decisions and influence your child’s life to raise him or her in the way you want. This includes access to information about the child, such as school and medical records. 

Contact with both parents 

In general, the law states that it is best for children to have consistent contact with both parents after a divorce. The time spent with each parent should allow for relationship development and a meaningful bond between parent and child. The court wants both parents to have a chance to fully enjoy all the rights of parenthood. The court never presumes one parent is better than the other or deserves more rights due to gender.