In a divorce or separation situation, emotions often run high. When decisions regarding custody and visitation arrangements of a couple’s children are involved, those sentiments can get even more charged. Some parents attempt to establish how custody and visitation will be handled on their own, under circumstances where both parties reach a mutually satisfactory agreement. However, situations change, things happen, or words are said that can change what started as an amicable arrangement into an ugly battle over where the children will live, the school they’ll attend, and how often they’ll visit the other parent.
If you are embroiled in a battle for custody or visitation rights over your children, don’t attempt to go it alone. Seek assistance from an experienced family law attorney – right away – one who is well familiar with all applicable laws. The best way to get your voice heard in the custody decision process is to let a qualified attorney represent you and speak on your behalf. The Law Office of Lance H. Meyer, family law attorney in the New York City & Long Island Area, Westchester, and Long Island provides the legal support you need.
How Is Child Custody Determined in New York State?
In New York State, child custody and child visitation court decisions are not made in favor of one parent or another, but rather are always made based upon what is in the best interest of the child, including the primary concerns of the child’s health and safety. The Court looks at a variety of factors when deciding custody and visitation, including assessing which parent has performed the role of primary caregiver and is best suited to take care of the children.
Decisions will be made regarding the type of child custody that may be awarded.
- Full custody – A parent awarded full custody has, in essence, full authority over the important decisions that affect a child’s life. For example, where the child’s primary residence will be and the school the child will attend.
- Physical/Residential custody – This type of custody determines the child’s primary residence. This means that the child lives with the parent who has been given physical custody and who then makes the day-to-day decisions that affect the child’s life.
- Joint/Shared custody – Residential custody aside, joint custody means both parents have an equal voice in the main decisions that affect how the child is raised.
Family law attorney Lance Meyer helps clients in custody cases understand exactly what a judge will be looking for in the course of making decisions regarding child custody and visitation. With advice that is both practical and realistic, our firm takes a direct approach to ensure you are fully aware of potential outcomes and can make informed decisions.
When determining custody based on what is in the best interest of the child, a judge will consider a variety of factors that may include:
- Each parent’s parenting skills, including their ability to care for a child’s special needs
- The health, both mental and physical, of each parent
- Any occurrences of domestic violence
- Each parent’s work schedule and if child care is a consideration
- Relationships among siblings
Depending on the circumstances and the age of the child, a judge might even ask the child directly what he or she wants.
With proper legal advice and counsel from a competent family law attorney, you will be prepared to address each concern and respond to every question posed. The Law Office of Lance H. Meyer understands all the workings of the New York State court system and how the family law can be applied and is available to assist.
We offer a complimentary consultation for the opportunity to get to know you and your divorce situation. At the same time, you will learn about us and gain the trust you need to rely on us to capably represent you in all dealings both in and out of court.
The Law Office of Lance H. Meyer provides family law services in Nassau, Queens, and Suffolk Counties, as well as in greater New York City and Long Island. We are committed to helping clients navigate the legal challenges that often arise with child support matters.