How Does a Military Deployment affect Your Time-Sharing Agreement?

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If you are serving in the military and become active, deployed, or are temporarily assigned military service and your ability to comply with a time-sharing agreement is materially affected as a result, under Fl. Stat. 61.13002, you should file a supplemental petition or a motion for modification of time-sharing or parental responsibility. Doing so will prevent the court from making any amendments or modifications to the time-sharing agreement in effect before the parent became active, deployed, or temporarily assigned military service. The only exception is if it can be shown by clear and convincing evidence that an amendment or modification should be made because doing so is in the best interest of the child.

If the court decides to issue a temporary order, the court shall consider and provide for contact between the servicemember and his or her child by feasible means of electronic communication such as webcam, telephone, or other available means. Because it is in the best interest of the child to maintain a bond with the parent serving the military, Florida courts will also permit liberal time-sharing during the periods of leave from military service. This temporary order will terminate and the previous time-sharing agreement in effect before the parent was called to military service shall be reinstated upon the servicemember’s return from active duty, deployment, etc.

It is important to maintain a bond with your child while serving in the military. Being deployed or temporarily assigned military service may also affect any active child support obligations. Contact a Florida Family Law Attorney to discuss how military deployment may affect your time-sharing or child support obligations. An attorney can also file a petition with the court to make amendments or modifications to a time-sharing agreement or child-support obligation that will account for your active service.