Having to deal with any type of family legal issue, whether it is divorce, paternity, or who has “custody” of the child, can be a very emotional and difficult time in an individual’s life. The uncertainty about the future and the complex and overwhelming legal issues can be exhausting for even the strongest person. But with family and divorce attorney Darla K. Snead in Lakeland, Florida as your advocate, you can be confident that you will have the legal support and backing to get through this tough time.

When you are faced with an important life decision regarding a key family issue and relationship, the advice and assistance of a Lakeland family attorney will prove crucial to your understanding of the issues involved. Specific areas of representation include divorce, paternity, and parenting plans also called timesharing.

We’ve got a wealth of experience in a wide-range of legal situations.

Call attorney Darla K. Snead at (863) 619-5291 in Lakeland, Florida, or contact us online for a consultation today!


Divorce is a process by which a marriage is legally dissolved. It involves the legal division of marital assets and debts and determining alimony and the parental responsibility for the children. Florida is a no-fault divorce state, meaning the reason for your divorce is of no concern. This also allows for either spouse to get a divorce, even if the other one does not consent. There are many legal issues that need to be dealt with during a divorce process, including spousal support, property division, and child custody. It is important to seek the help of an experienced attorney to assist you and minimize the pain of the divorce process.


Establishing paternity and parental rights and obligations is critical when a child is born to unwed parents. Establishing paternity is similar to the process of addressing children’s issues in a divorce proceeding. The court will look to create a parenting plan that is in the best interests of the child, including consideration of school, home life, and other factors


The care and upbringing of children following a divorce is often an ongoing conflict for divorcing parents. Child support involves the parent’s financial support of children. The exact amount of financial support will depend on each parent’s financial situation and the needs of the child. Section 61.30 of the Florida Statutes sets forth a schedule of child support payments based on the number of children and parental income. Factors that may add or subtract from the recommended guideline amount include any special needs the child may have, each parent’s financial status and ability to pay, and the number of overnight visits the child spends with each parent.

In lieu of “child custody,” the state of Florida has a preference for shared parental responsibility for children in the form of parenting plans and timesharing. This means that each parent will fully retain parental rights and responsibilities to the child; thus, both will have to consult with each other before making major life decisions that affect the child’s well-being, including education, medical decisions, and religion. A parent may seek sole parental responsibility in certain cases, however it is more difficult to prove that one parent should be excluded from making important decisions in a child’s life.

Timesharing basically allocates the amount of time the child spends with each parent. The primary consideration determining the timesharing schedule is the “best interests of the child.” Section 63.13(3) of the Florida Statutes lists twenty factors to be considered, including: the ability of each parent to have a close relationship with the child, where the child goes to school, whether child care would be needed, the physical and mental health of each parent, the child’s preference, and other relevant factors.


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