What does Shared Parental Responsibilty mean?

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What does Shared Parental Responsibilty mean?

If this is in your divorce what does it really mean?

Asked on May 13, 2009 under Family Law, Florida

Answers:

L.M., Member, California Bar / FreeAdvice Contributing Attorney

Answered 12 years ago | Contributor

The concept of shared parental responsibility provides a framework for effective co-parenting. It is the public policy of the State of Florida to encourage parents to share the rights and responsibilities of child rearing. Shared parental responsibility is a court ordered relationship in which both parents retain full parental rights and responsibilities and in which both parents confer with each other, so that major decisions affecting the welfare of the children will be determined jointly. The concept of shared parental responsibility is intended to protect the children's right to an ongoing relationship with both parents.  Each parent is responsible for making day-to-day decisions regarding the children's care, maintenance and welfare while the children are in his or her care. The parents consult with one another on questions related to religious upbringing, discipline, financial matters, moral training, social and recreational activities, and non-emergency medical and dental care. Each parent takes an active role in providing a sound moral, social, economic and educational environment for the children and in amicably resolving any disputes that arise.

The parents should at all times conduct themselves and their activities in a way that will promote the welfare and best interests of the children.

Each parent must notify the other parent promptly of any serious illness or accident affecting the children.  Each parent has access to records and information pertaining to the minor children, including but not limited to medical, dental, and school records.  Both parents are entitled to authorize emergency medical treatment for the children.

Both parents have an affirmative duty under Florida law to promote a good relationship between the children and the other parent. Both parents must attempt to insure that the children have unhampered contact and free access with both parents. Neither parent may do anything to hamper the natural development of the children's love and respect for the other parent. A parent should not disparage the other parent or discuss the divorce in the children’s presence. Each parent must make all reasonable efforts to encourage and facilitate communication between the other parent and the children — in person, by telephone, and through the mail. Neither parent should do anything that would estrange the children from the other parent or that would injure the children's opinion of either parent.


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