final until disposition of timely filed motion for rehearing.
of Original Jurisdiction-Prohibition. Lower Tribunal No.
Berman, Karpf & Gonzalez, P.A., and Mitchell K. Karpf
(Fort Lauderdale); Cynthia L. Greene, for petitioner.
Offices of Jeffrey Alan Aenlle, P.A., and Jeffrey Alan
Aenlle; Brannock & Humphries, and Ceci C. Berman and
Joseph T. Eagleton (Tampa), for respondent.
SCALES, LINDSEY and GORDO, JJ.
Britny Bock (the mother) seeks an emergency writ of
prohibition from this Court both: (i) to vacate an order
denying her motion to dismiss the Respondent Jonathan
Vilma's (the father) second amended petition to modify
parenting plan and reduce child support; and (ii) to prohibit
the circuit court from making custody or any other
determinations regarding the minor child of the mother and
father. We deny the petition because the trial court has not
acted in excess of its jurisdiction.
Relevant Background Facts
2016, in lower tribunal case number 16-8230-FC-07, the mother
and father domesticated in Florida a May 2015 Louisiana
consent paternity judgment that adjudicated, among other
things, certain timesharing and support issues related to
their minor child. In May 2018, while the minor child was
residing in Florida, the father filed, in the Miami-Dade
County Circuit Court, a petition seeking to modify the child
support provisions of the domesticated consent judgment. The
mother then notified the father of her intent to make a
permanent move with the minor child from Florida to Maryland,
which she did in August 2018.
father amended his petition twice (once on June 13, 2018 and
again on July 24, 2018). In his original petition, the father
sought a reduction in his child support obligations due to a
change in his income. In his two amended petitions, the
father also sought an increased role in his parental
responsibilities, particularly because he was aware of and
opposed to the relocation of his child. The father amended
his petition again on February 27, 2019, to address the
material change in circumstances caused by the mother and
child's relocation to Maryland. The mother moved to
dismiss the father's amended petition, arguing, in part,
that the child's residency in Maryland for more than six
months caused the Florida court to lose subject matter
jurisdiction. It appears from our limited record that the
trial court did not rule on the mother's motion to
dismiss, and that two new events intervened to alter the
course of the litigation.
in April 2019, the mother filed an action in family court in
Maryland seeking to, among other things, establish Maryland
as the child's home. In August 2019, the Maryland court
denied the father's motion to dismiss that action.
the child came to stay with the father in Miami during the
summer of 2019. According to the mother, the father refused
to return the child to Maryland on a designated date in
August 2019, for the start of the school year, and instead
enrolled the child in school in Miami.
August 19, 2019, the mother filed an emergency motion in the
Miami-Dade court seeking an order requiring the father to
return the child to Maryland. After conducting a four-hour
evidentiary hearing over two days, the trial court denied the
motion, without prejudice, on August 27, 2019. The trial
court's order provided that "[t]he child shall
remain in the State of Florida until further ordered by this
Court." The mother then filed her emergency prohibition
petition to this Court.