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CS/CS/HB 1217 — Deployed Parent Custody and Visitation

by Judiciary Committee; Civil Justice and Claims Subcommittee; and Rep. Metz and others (CS/CS/SB 1598 by Rules Committee; Judiciary Committee; and Senator Passidomo)

This summary is provided for information only and does not represent the opinion of any Senator, Senate Officer, or Senate Office.

Prepared by: Judiciary Committee (JU)

The bill creates the Uniform Deployed Parents Custody and Visitation Act. The act establishes a framework for resolving child custody and visitation issues when a parent is deployed in military or other forms of national service. In addition to providing definitions for the act, the bill:

  • Requires parents to communicate about custody and visitation issues upon learning of an upcoming deployment.
  • Addresses custody issues that arise when someone receives notice of deployment and during deployment by permitting an out-of-court agreement. If the parents do not reach an agreement, an expedited resolution of custody arrangement is available in court.
  • Provides that no permanent custody order can be issued before or during deployment unless the servicemember consents.
  • Governs termination of a temporary custody arrangement by written agreement between the parents or by court order.

The bill repeals s. 61.13002, F.S., pertaining to temporary time-sharing modification and child support modification due to military service. Repealing the current statute prevents any conflicts between the existing section and the new act.

If approved by the Governor, these provisions take effect July 1, 2018.

Vote: Senate 36-0; House 109-0