CLERMONT FAMILY LAW ATTORNEY: WHO GETS THE PET IN A DIVORCE?
Divorce is never easy, but it’s a reality roughly 32% of married couples face in the United States. From Children to finances and everything in between, finding an equitable path between two parties at odds can be a challenge. Now add the beloved family pet into the fracas and an already strenuous situation has the capacity to become volatile. So when it comes to divorce in Florida, who is Fido’s family?
Earlier this year, Alaska became the first state in the nation to require that courts “take into consideration the well-being of the animal” during a divorce and empowers judges to assign joint custody of pets. Hailed as a victory by animal activists for the newfound recognition of our four (or two) legged friends, the natural progression is to ask, “When is my state next”.
According to Clermont, Florida based family law attorney, Justin Rickman, Florida is unlikely to amend family pet classifications anytime soon. “When you take into account the overwhelming responsibility of the Florida courts to rule in matters related to custody, visitation and support of minor children” said Rickman, “there just aren’t enough resources to allow for the same responsibility geared toward animals.”
“There are alternatives however to resolve the matter amicably in the eyes of the court” continued Rickman, “such as the parties coming into a time-sharing agreement as it relates to the family pet”.
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