Safe Exchange of Minor Children & Parenting Plans 

Effective July 2024

In 2022, a Florida woman was killed after she agreed to a last-minute custody exchange. She and her 4-year-old daughter met the father in a restaurant parking lot. Soon after, Carli’s body was found buried in a shallow grave in Alabama. The father of the minor child has been charged. The incident sparked proposed legislation crafted in part by the Family Law Section of the Florida Bar initially died in the senate in 2023, but a revised version eventually made it to the Governor’s desk to be signed into law.

Shared Parental Responsibility

Not only does the law will require the establishment of safe exchange locations in every Florida County it also requires the court to consider certain factors — including if a parent or child is in imminent danger or has been the victim of domestic violence, abuse, abandonment or neglect — when deciding whether shared parental responsibility would help or harm the a child.

Although some believe it’s not enough to prevent tragedies like this, Senate Bill 580 sought to help to prevent them. Similarly, Greyson’s Law sought to do the same after a father killed his son then himself after a lengthy high conflict child custody matter that included domestic violence.

Enforcement & Contempt of Violating Parenting Plans

The new law gives the courts the power to order parents to use a safe exchange location that would be subjected to the same enforcement and contempt powers of the courts. If parents choose or are ordered to use the designated safe exchange location, the bill outlines that neither of the parents can violate the parenting plan or time-sharing schedule, or be charged with the offense of interfering with the parenting plan.

As seasoned child custody attorneys in Tampa, with over 30 years of experience, we know that high conflict child custody situations are not uncommon. When domestic violence against a child’s parent or child is noted, the parenting plan should include or be modified to include an order for safe custody exchange. The new law goes further in that it prevents parents from legal liability should they choose to use the county’s designated safe exchange area rather than a court-appointed location. You do not need the court’s permission to use the designated custody exchange areas.



Tampa child custody - New Florida Legislation

FAQ – Cassie Carli Law , Safe Custody Exchange Location

  • Florida Sheriff’s in every county will establish a location with a purple light location in a parking lot that’s accessible 24 hours a day, seven days a week, have adequate lighting and also 24-hour video surveillance.
  • Under the Cassie Carli Law, a parent who seeks a domestic violence injunction against the other parent can request to use the safe exchange location.
  • When deciding whether shared parental responsibility would help or harm the a child, the law now requires the courts to consider certain factors, including if a parent or child is in imminent danger or has been the victim of domestic violence, abuse, abandonment or neglect.
  • Require protective order petitions to include a checkbox to request a safe-exchange location.
Tampa Child Custody Attorneys

Nilo J Sanchez & Associates PA Family Law & Divorce Attorneys have extensive experience in representing parents who need resolve in a variety of high conflict child custody matters including;

We know the new laws can be confusing. If you are in a high conflict child custody situation, or if you need to consult with a Tampa Family Law Attorney to inquire about any child custody matter such as establishing legal paternity or parental relocation with a minor child or any issue related to your minor children, reach out to us to schedule an affordable family law consultation in Hillsborough, Pinellas and Pasco County, FL.

Telephone: (813) 879-4600

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