Generally speaking, Florida law allows a parent of either gender to have a relationship with their child. Therefore, as a father, you have an opportunity to obtain either custody or visitation rights to your child. In many cases, this means that your child will spend part of the week at your house and part of the week at your former partner’s home. However, it’s also possible that the child will stay at home while you split time between that house and your own home or apartment, pursuant to a concept called “nesting”.
What to know about nesting
Nesting may be ideal if a divorce takes place during the school year or if the family home won’t be ready to sell for several weeks or months. This is because it allows your child to retain some sense of familiarity during an otherwise chaotic period. Furthermore, it provides incentive to maintain the family home until it can be sold because you want your child to have a quality living environment.
The impact of nesting on a parent
While nesting may be in the child’s best interest, it may pose several challenges as a parent. The primary challenge is that it can be tough to afford two housing payments each month. Furthermore, there is no guarantee that your former partner will clean or maintain the home while you are away, which may have a negative impact on your child.
Nesting is generally temporary
Typically, nesting is a temporary solution that lasts for a period of several weeks or months after a divorce. This is largely because the home will either be sold or transferred into the possession of either yourself or your former partner. At that point, a child custody arrangement tends to morph into something that looks and feels like a typical parenting plan.
As a father, you have the right to pursue equal access to your child after a divorce. The law will generally allow you to have access to your child assuming that doing so is in the minor’s best interest.