Emergency Child Relocation in Florida
Brandon Family Law Attorneys Helping Parents with Issues Related to Emergency Custody
Shared child time-sharing (also known as custody) arrangements allow both parents to spend time with a child. These court orders can be modified when there is a substantial change in circumstances that warrants a change. Obtaining a modification to child time-sharing can take weeks or months however, so what happens when an emergency requires that a parent obtain custody immediately?
Emergency Child Custody Orders
Fortunately for parents who are concerned about their child’s well-being, the state of Florida allows parents to request an emergency hearing in order to obtain custody and relocate their child from the other parent. Florida Statutes section 61.534 allows courts to issue a warrant for a parent to take custody of a child if the court finds that the child is likely to imminently suffer serious physical harm or removal from the state.
What Qualifies as an Emergency?
It’s important to understand that this process is not meant to resolve “regular’ time-sharing disputes, and that courts rarely grant these kinds of requests because it can deprive the other parent of his or her rights without due process. As a result, it is necessary for a true emergency that puts a child in danger for a court to grant the emergency relocation of a child.
Some examples of situations that may qualify as an emergency within the meaning of the law include:
- Active substance abuse on the part of the custodial parent
- A credible threat indicating that the custodial parent is considering abducting the child
- Evidence of recent child abuse or neglect
- A threat by the custodial parent to harm the child
Do You Need a Lawyer to Seek an Emergency Relocation Warrant?
It is highly advisable for anyone considering requesting the emergency relocation of a child to discuss their situation with an experienced attorney. First of all, a lawyer familiar with Florida family law can help you determine if a court is likely to agree with you that an emergency exists. If one does, a lawyer will be able to present your case in court in a way that maximizes your chances of obtaining a favorable outcome.
Full Trial for Custody
If your request for a temporary custody order is granted, there will eventually be a full trial in order to determine the issue. In this proceeding, a judge will either modify or terminate the temporary order that gave you custody. Depending on the circumstances, the judge may terminate the other parent’s time-sharing rights, provide for joint time-sharing, reinstate the previous time-sharing order, or take a number of other actions. As a parent, it’s critical to obtain legal representation for any proceeding that can affect your parental rights.
Call Us Today to Schedule a Free Consultation with a Brandon Family Law Attorney
If you have any issues related to child custody, time-sharing, or relocation, you should call a lawyer as soon as you can. At Carman, Bevington & Finegan, P.A., we are dedicated to helping parents protect their rights and find solutions that allow children to thrive. To schedule a case evaluation with a family lawyer in Brandon, Florida, call our office today at 813-654-3444 or contact us online.