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Articles Posted in Trials

Female-Judge-300x200The complex nature of family law or divorce proceedings means cases rarely go as smoothly as one might hope. While working with the correct divorce or family law attorney can help to make the process more straightforward, there are still cases wherein one party might strive to make the situation more difficult for the other.

In some instances, the actions of a party in a divorce proceeding, family law case or after a Judgment of Divorce has already been granted, may drive the other to seek an order charging the ex-spouse with “contempt.” This action highlights the decision of the party held in contempt to ignore court ordered requirments, or act inappropriately in a case. Continue reading ›

Coupledisputebacktoback-300x205It’s common in divorce cases for the less-monied spouse (the one with the lower income) to seek various forms of maintenance from the other spouse. It’s possible to work with your divorce or family law attorney to request both “temporary” maintenance, and post-divorce maintenance or to oppose the request for it, depending which side of the equation you find yourself.

Awards for both temporary and post-divorce maintenance are retroactive to the date of the application, and both forms of maintenance are awarded based on a specific formula. However, temporary maintenance isn’t subject to the same advisory schedule regarding duration. It’s also possible for amounts paid before a divorce is finalized to be considered when calculating the maintenance to pay.

Let’s explore some of the factors which might impact the kind of maintenance payments awarded to the less-monied spouse during divorce proceedings. Continue reading ›

Couple-Home-300x200Maintenance is a common consideration in many divorce cases, wherein extra support needs to be offered to a specific spouse. In many divorces, the less-monied spouse seeks temporary maintenance to help with the costs of getting legal representation and supporting themselves when the divorce is ongoing. At times both temporary maintenance and post-divorce maintenance (support given at the end of a divorce), can help to preserve a spouse’s financial wellbeing during the case and when a marriage is dissolved.

Any maintenance order given by the courts in New York, whether temporary, or post-divorce in nature, has the possibility of being retroactive. This means the party seeking support may receive payments owed backward from the moment they applied for this support. For individuals attempting to get back on track as quickly as possible, it’s important to ensure you’re getting access to all of the financial support owed.

Notably, temporary maintenance is not subject to the same advisory schedule for duration as post-divorce maintenance. Let’s take a closer look at the complexities of calculating maintenance arrears in the case of temporary maintenance. Continue reading ›

Female-Judge-300x200Welcome back to another addition to our series of bullet-point guides on parenting time and visitation in child custody cases. As you’ve likely noticed throughout the course of these series, parenting time decisions can be a source of significant stress and complexity for a lot of couples.

Even if your relationship came to an end in an amicable way, each parent may disagree on how to ensure they get the best for their children. Unfortunately, not all parents will see eye to eye when it comes to defining the best interests of the child. So far during this series, we’ve looked at various factors that can come into consideration when a court is making decisions about parenting time orders.

Now, we’re going to examine the statements a child custody attorney, like myself, might make when representing a client during a case for visitation and parenting time. Continue reading ›

Parents-adventure-300x200Recently, I’ve been publishing bullet-point guides on the topic of parenting time and visitation in child custody and divorce cases. So far, we’ve covered a lot of different points that may arise during these complex cases. In this segment of our guide, we’ll be looking at a quick snap shot about appeals, and when orders may be upheld, or reversed.

In the New York courts, decisions made about child custody, visitation, and parenting time rights must always focus on the “best interests” of the children standards. This means the courts will carefully consider all of the circumstances of the case, before issuing an order considered to be in the best interests of the child or children involved.

Of course, there will be occasions when the parents in a divorce or separation case will not agree that the order is right for the child. When this happens, parents may choose to work with a child custody attorney to appeal the decisions made by the court. Continue reading ›

familyfloor-300x200In child custody, visitation, and parenting time cases, a lot of issues can come to the surface. While any family law case can be a complicated and emotional experience for everyone involved, cases which include children are often particularly difficult, because everyone has strong opinions about how the case should be settled.

In many cases, I find that parents end up agreeing to their own idea of the perfect parenting time and visitation strategy through mediation with a professional like myself (when I am a mediator for the parties, I am neutral and meet and speak with the couple together from the outset and throughout). This agreement can then be given to the courts for their approval. However, in other circumstances, for couples that choose litigation as their divorce process, the case may need to go to the courts. In this bullet-point guide series, we’re looking at some of the major factors parents and other parties may need to know when addressing parenting and visitation time cases.

In this section, I’ll be talking about forensics, and when they might be ordered by the courts to help with making decisions about a child’s wellbeing. Continue reading ›

Parents-Waving-300x200Parenting time and child visitation cases are often some of the most complicated for any family to deal with. Unfortunately, when two parents get a divorce, or decide to separate, decisions need to be made about how the custody of the child should be split between the two people.

In many cases, it’s possible for two parents to come to an agreement based on the perceived best interests of the child. Unfortunately, after a while, one parent or another might decide that the order of child visitation or parenting time is no longer appropriate for the situation. This is when people come to Child custody lawyers like me for help requesting a modification.

In this section of our parenting time bullet guide, we will be looking at occasions when the courts may dismiss a request for modification for custody and parenting time without a hearing. We will also be touching on sobriety as an issue for visitation cases. 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 ›

Couple-Home-300x200For some time now on this blog, I have been publishing these bullet point guides, which are a blend of my blogs over the years, as a solution for people who need to learn more about divorce. The end of a marriage is a complicated thing, and the complexities of your case may begin to feel overwhelming when you’re approaching litigation for the first time. These bullet guides aim to provide an easy-to-access way to answer some of your most pressing questions.

In this bullet point guide, we will be looking specifically at marital and separate property in divorce equitable distribution, as well as the role that taxes might play in separating assets. We will also touch on the decisions to be made about business ownership during a New York divorce.

Defining Marital and Separate Property

As mentioned in previous blog posts and guides, the process that New York courts use to distribute assets between two parties in a divorce is called equitable distribution. This process involves sharing “marital assets” based on what the court considers to be just and fair.

  • Marital assets are broadly defined by the New York law for Domestic Relations as property obtained after the date of the marriage and before a separation agreement is executed, or the filing of a divorce case.
  • Separate property is not included in equitable distribution considerations under the Domestic Relations Law. Separate property is anything that was kept separate and either acquired before the date of the marriage, or the property that was received by one party as a gift or inheritance. Sometimes, personal, or separate property may also include personal injury awards.
  • In New York divorce cases, marital property can include a range of things, including retirement and pension benefits acquired within the marriage, automobiles, real-estate, furniture, stocks, bank accounts, and even business components. All marital property must be equitably distributed according to the laws of New York, unless there is an agreement otherwise.
  • When determining how to divide marital property between two spouses, the courts will often consider a variety of things, including the current income of each spouse, their age, their earning potential, their health, and the contributions that each person made to the marriage, both financial and otherwise.

Continue reading ›

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