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Articles Posted in Parenting Time

ParentsPark-300x200Parenting time and child custody cases often go hand-in-hand. Once a person has been granted primary custody over a child, the other parent in the case will often receive some type of order in terms of parenting and visitation time (if it is requested). This ensures the child can build or continue a relationship with both parents.

Of course, making decisions about how much time a child should spend with either parent isn’t always easy. Often, people will argue that an order should be modified if they feel something needs to be changed about the parenting schedule.

In today’s bullet point guide, we’ll be looking at the modifications that may occur in a case regarding child custody and visitation following accusations of parental alienation and interference. We’ll also be briefly looking at the evidence time period for a modification of custody and visitation orders in New York. Continue reading ›

Kid-Piggyback-300x238Welcome to another addition in this bullet point guide on parenting time and visitation in family law. As you may know if you’ve read some of the other blogs on this website, parenting time and visitation issues are a common cause of arguments and unrest in many divorce and separation cases. People are often unwilling to compromise when it comes to seeing their children.

Often, it’s difficult to determine when the “right” time might be for visitation to a non-residential custodial parent. I have worked with countless clients in the past who have preferred to use their own schedules, rather than pre-set suggestions common in the legal landscape.

Today, we’re looking at how parenting time can be affected by considerations like school nights, and even difficult global situations. Continue reading ›

FamilyOutside-200x300Welcome to another segment in our series of Parenting Time bullet point guides. Over the last few months, I’ve been creating a series of helpful curated guides, taking information from elsewhere in this blog, and placing it in a more consumable format. These bullet-point guidance documents are intended to offer quick answers to questions you might have about aspects of family law.

In this series, we’re looking at parenting time and visitation – a concept that has some different nuances in family law. Any case which involves the care of a child is often exceedingly difficult for any parent to deal with. This is why it’s so important to be aware of your rights, and the kind of decisions you’ll need to make in these situations.

This part of our parenting time bullet guide will cover the topics of parent education and defining the “primary caretaker” in a family law cases. Continue reading ›

Closeupfamily-300x200Welcome back to this third installment in our series of Parenting Time bullet point guides. Following on from the other fast-paced guides I’ve produced on this website about divorce and child custody, this particular handbook will cover everything you need to know about visitation rights, and the decisions that need to be made about parenting time for a child’s future.

So far, we’ve addressed topics like parental relationships, same-sex couples, the rights of stepparents and more. Today, we’re going to be examining when it might be appropriate for joint legal custody to be with the parents, and what that means for visitation schedules.

We’ll also be looking at the actions of parent coordinators in the legal landscape, and how they can help with things like making parenting time decisions. Continue reading ›

ParentsJeansKids-300x200Welcome back to another addition in our series of Parenting Time bullet point guides. These guides aim to give you a quick and easy insight into some of the most important parts of parenting time, visitation, and accompanying concepts in family law.

For today’s segment, we’ll be looking at the issues that may arise when someone not classed a “traditional” parent might seek visitation time opportunities. Specifically, we’ll be exploring concepts like same-sex couples, biological strangers, and the rights of stepparents.

As always, there are plenty of additional blogs and articles on my website if you find yourself in need of more guidance. Continue reading ›

Piggy-back-200x300There are many complicated components of family law to be aware of when you’re pursuing a divorce or separation, from equitable distribution to spousal and child support. For many parents and families whether never married or going through a divorce the biggest worry of all will be around the decisions that must be made regarding parenting time, and visitation schedules.

Most every parent wants to ensure they have enough time with their child, to do their part in raising that youngster to adulthood. Following on from my serious of bullet point guides about divorce, child support, and orders of protection, I’ve decided to create this guide to parenting time to help anyone in search of quick and easy information about parenting time issues.

In this segment of the guide, we’ll be taking a look at visitation schedules, and how they can vary drastically from one family to the next. Continue reading ›

Meditation-Coach-300x200Staying together for the kids is often not the choice people make in an unhappy marriage or relationship. For many, the best thing that can be done for both yourself and your little ones, is find a way to move on.  For others it might be continuing to work on the relationship. When the relationship with your children’s other parent doesn’t work, you need to think about how you can move forward without causing excessive discomfort for you and your child.

One common question that you may need to think about is whether it’s better to have the child living equally with you and another child’s parent. Another option could be to limit the amount of time that your child has with the other parent if the other parent might not be suitable for your child. Some parents even need to think about fighting the requests of other parents and making sure that they get adequate parenting time out of the new agreement.  What is the right choice?  What is the best process to use to get agreements or to make court orders?

Addressing Different Perspectives in Child Custody Litigation

Everyone has a different perspective and unique goals with these cases. In one of my first days at law school, my professor said something to our class. This point has stuck with me for over 26 years, and it’s something that resonates more than ever today. He was quoting a legal scholar.  He said that his wish was that he was able to put on everyone else’s glasses and see the world through their eyes.  He meant that true wisdom could come from seeing the world through all perspectives. Continue reading ›

Selfie-Mother-300x200At the time of writing this blog, the New York Courts are still only willing to accept new cases that it deems essential to help reduce interactions in the times of the COVID-19 coronavirus. This means that many issues have been put on hold for the time being.

In cases of child custody or divorce, it’s common to feel as though all of your issues are essential. However, the court may not be willing to hear them unless they can see a reason for the case being an “emergency”. One thing that is generally not dealt with, at this time during the coronavirus pandemic, as an emergency is child custody and parenting cases. However, there’s always a chance that a court could choose to accept any particular case as an emergency or essential when considering an application.

Recently, I’ve received a number of calls from parents looking to limit parenting time or that are concerned that they are not getting their parenting time because of COVID-19. The starting point in this situation is to remember that if an order already exists for custody and parenting time for a parent, then the starting point for any analysis is that order. There should be a presumption that this order is the proper custody and parenting time that should happen. However, if there are health concerns posed by the pandemic, for example, there might be exceptions.

Addressing Parenting Time In Difficult Circumstances

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ParentsWalk-300x200Child custody, visitation, and parenting time cases are complicated for many reasons. The courts of New York are required to make decisions based on the “best interests” of the child or children involved. This requires a careful consideration of multiple factors, such as which parent can provide the child with the right level of care, the parenting skills of each parent, and more. It can take time for the court to be able to hold a full evidentiary hearing in order for both sides to present all the evidence necessary to make decisions regarding a child’s best interests. Until that time, though, temporary orders for visitation, parenting time, and child custody may be provided to guide parents while the final order is pending.  In Family Court they are called temporary orders and in a divorce, in the Supreme Court they are often called “Pendente Lite” orders which is a Latin legal term for an order while the case is pending.

A final order of custody, without the consent of the parties involved, if there has never been a prior custody determination, should not be made without a full evidentiary hearing that allows the courts to consider the factors surrounding “best interests” carefully. However, full evidentiary hearings may not happen for a long time, sometimes many months. If one side or the other in the case requests a visitation or parenting schedule when waiting for the final order to be provided, I find that the courts often attempt to ensure that each side has meaningful time with the child or children. The preferred method of the courts is generally to get the consent of the parents to a schedule that they both agree to for temporary orders. Continue reading ›

Mediation-Consultation-300x200When an inquiry comes in for someone inquiring about getting a divorce, someone from my office attempts to ascertain from them whether they are interested in using our office as a neutral divorce mediator.  If they’re interested in mediation, we invite them to bring their spouse to come in for a free initial consultation to meet with me.  We explain that I do not, at least initially, meet with the couple one on one, or have an initial consultation with either one of them before meeting the couple together.    The consultation is usually up to a half hour in length, although some couples choose to immediately begin mediating that day after the initial consultation. 

I might start by telling the couple that I am a divorce lawyer, but in a divorce mediation, I do not act as the lawyer for either side.  I inform them that it is recommended that each of them hire and use their own individual review attorneys.  I explain that review attorneys are the individuals that will explain the law, their rights, and advise each of them.  A review attorney might say, “This is a good deal” or “You might want to change this deal a little bit” or “You won’t do better in litigation” or “You will do better in litigation”.  Either side could prepare for mediation sessions, prior to each session, with their review lawyers.  They can then debrief with the review attorneys after sessions and prepare for the next.  If not beforehand, the time to consult with a review attorney would be when an agreement is drafted.  I might mention that in the perfect world everyone uses review attorneys, however, the reality is that not everyone takes me up on that recommendation.  I am not sure of the exact number but perhaps half of the mediating individuals use review lawyers and the other half do not.  The half that do not perhaps believe that they have educated themselves on the issues and think that the mediated agreement is fair and are ready to do it.  Either way I do tell them that review attorneys are recommended but usually not required (there are exceptions).  
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