Divorce Attorney Scott J. Stadler

    • 11 DEC 13

    Children First!

    Parental responsibility and child related issues are the most emotionally charged issues of all divorce cases. The duties and responsibilities of the divorcing parents and the family court judge are the greatest and most complex. When divorcing parents hand over the responsibilities of parenthood to the judicial branch of government to decide the most intimate family issues, it is very likely that one or both parents will not be happy with the result. Simply put, the courts are flooded with divorcing families who are all asking a government official to decide their fate. There is this belief that the court will see how I am right and you are wrong. Surprisingly, the courts decide a case with a result that neither parent likes. This causes many appeals to be filed.

    Being right does not always translate to benefiting your children. Sometimes it is very difficult to separate being right from compromising for the benefit of your children. Florida law requires parents to discuss major decisions about their children such as health and education. That means in spite of all the reasons for getting divorced (like adultery) you still have to speak to that person after you are no longer married on a co-parenting level, even though you cannot stand that person on a personal level. Many parents are not able to communicate with each other at all. How does that benefit the children? Simply put it does not.

    For years the courts have encouraged divorcing parents to resolve their differences through mediation. In effect, parents have been urged to make their own decisions in the hope that they can live with an agreement that they made, instead of being told what to do by a stranger, whom we call a judge. If you give up all decision making power about your children and give those powers to the government, the consequences may very well be detrimental. Keep a realistic view and understand that the court have a limited amount of time, with a limited amount of information to decide issues about your children.