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Visitation & Parental Rights

Tampa Visitation & Parental Rights Attorneys Advocate for You

Florida Bar board-certified Family Lawyer Seeks Parenting Time Solutions

In Tampa, a city of about 360,000 people, about 14 percent of the adult population is divorced and another four percent are separated. Many of those adults are parents with children under the age of 18, and, like you, they must deal with conflicts over co-parenting and time-sharing. So, if you are having issues related to visitation, you are certainly not alone. At Sessums Law Group, we regularly help our Tampa clients assert their parental rights. We also provide representation for grandparents who, through no fault of their own, have been cut off from their grandchildren. When it comes to your relationship with your children, you want the finest legal representation available. When you retain our services, you get personal counsel from a Florida Bar board-certified family law attorney who pursues effective remedies capably and aggressively.

What Right Does a Tampa Parent Have to Visitation?

Florida family law has gotten away from the term “visitation,” which tends to imply the noncustodial parent has a diminished role in the life of the child. Parents who are not in a position to provide a residence for the child can still retain joint legal custody, or “shared decision-making responsibility,” with the other parent. Therefore, you also have the right to:

  • Receive timely information pertinent to your child’s health, education and welfare
  • Interact with your child’s physician(s), teachers, coaches, pastor, and so on
  • Attend your child’s activities
  • Be designated an emergency contact for your child
  • Withhold consent for medical, dental or surgical treatment

You also have the right to frequent, meaningful contact with your child. Whether you are going through a divorce or have never been married to the child’s custodial parent, you have the right to ask the court for a child custody order that upholds your parental rights.

What Is Termination of Parental Rights?

Under certain circumstances, a court can terminate a parent’s legal right to have a relationship with the child when that relationship could put the child at risk. That determination would be made during a hearing where evidence of domestic violence, sexual abuse, immoral lifestyle, or substance abuse demonstrates that continued contact with the parent would be detrimental to the child’s health and welfare.   In other cases, a parent may voluntarily relinquish parental rights to allow the child to be adopted. A parent whose rights have been terminated no longer has a responsibility for the child, so orders for child support are also terminated.

What Parental Rights Do Unwed Fathers Have in Florida?

Unwed fathers are responsible for providing support for their children, but they can also sue to have their parental rights honored. A court can grant an unwed father parenting time, including overnights, as well as decision-making authority. However, unlike married fathers who have presumed rights, unwed fathers must take specific legal steps to be recognized as fathers before their rights can be enforced.

What Rights to Visitation Do Grandparents Have in Florida?

Grandparents have very limited statutory rights to visit with their grandchildren. Under Florida law, grandparents have rights if both parents are deceased, missing, or in a persistent vegetative state, or if those circumstances apply to one parent while the other parent has been convicted of a felony or violent crime or poses a substantial threat to the welfare of the child. When even one parent is present and sound, grandparents have no statutory rights to visitation with their grandchildren if that parent denies them access.

Sessums Law Group represents parents and grandparents throughout the Tampa Bay area in custody and visitation disputes. We are determined to help you obtain a result that protects your parental rights. Please call (813) 212-8330 or contact us online to schedule an appointment at our Tampa office.

Our Settlements & Verdicts

Sessums Law Group, P.A. Attorneys Take Pride in Delivering Exceptional Results for Our Valued Clients

Our top priority is to devise customized legal strategies that are tailored to the unique legal needs of our clients, no matter how simple or complicated their situations, might be.

  • $6,000,000.00 Recovery Fraud Civil Action

    Sessums Law Group, P.A. successfully recovered $6,000,000.00 for a client in a fraud civil action.  Prior to the client’s divorce, the client negotiated and executed an agreement with his wife’s boyfriend that sought that the boyfriend would have no contact with the client’s wife.

  • $2,740,000.00 Wrongful Death Hit/Run of Motorcyclist

    Representation of the plaintiff hit from behind on his motorcycle by a driver who was allegedly drunk at the time of the accident.  Sued the defendant; the bar that the defendant had been drinking and the defendant’s employer.

  • $1,929,000.00 Verdict Real Estate Deficiency

    Representation of estate in real estate deficiency claim resulting in joint and several liability verdict against various doctors and chiropractors.

  • $1,000,000.00 Settlement Collision

    Representation of estate in an automobile and tractor trailer collision that resulted in multiple deaths.

  • Confidential Settlement Amount Medical Malpractice

    Client was burned with a hot pack after delivering her son via Cesarean section.

  • Confidential Settlement Amount Nursing Home Negligence

    Representation of the Personal Representative of the Estate of the patient who died due to negligent care while in the care of the nursing home.

  • Confidential Settlement Amount Trolley Accident

    Representation of passengers who were enjoying a sight- seeing tour aboard a trolley when the trolley was hit by a bus. The passengers suffered soft tissue injuries.

  • Confidential Settlement Amount Hit & Run

    Sessums Law Group was recently successful in settling a case for a hard working Polk County man whose hit and run accident resulted in a need for a knee replacement.  The defendant argued that our client had caused the accident.  We were able to prove through expert accident reconstruction testimony that the accident happened as our client testified despite the minimal damage involved.

  • Confidential Settlement Stolen Property

    Client’s vehicle was burglarized and her engagement and wedding rings stolen. The perpetrator pawned the stolen items to a local pawn shop. The pawn shop ignored the hold order from the police department and sold the engagement and wedding rings. After suit filed for the Plaintiff, a confidential settlement was reached with the pawn shop for the value to our client of her stolen rings.

Florida Attorneys with Proven Expertise, Devoted to Exceptional Service

"Our firm believes in the integrity of the needs of the each client we represent. We are passionate about obtaining the maximum results allowable under the law for each client."

- Mark A. Sessums