Nassau County Child Custody Lawyers
Whether you are going through a divorce or if you were never married to the parent of your child, one thing that might be very important to you is handling matters of child custody. After all, your child and his or her well-being is probably of the utmost importance to you. When dealing with any type of child custody case, it is smart to work with Nassau County child custody lawyers who know the law and who can help ensure that the decisions are made for your child.
What is Child Custody?
Child custody refers to the determination of which parent is responsible for your child. If you are going through a divorce, this has to be determined since your family dynamic is changing significantly. This is also the case if you are splitting up with the other parent after being in a live-in situation or in other situations.
What are the Different Types of Child Custody?
First of all, you should understand that there are different types of child custody. There is legal custody, which involves the parent who is put in charge of making important decisions for the child, such as in regards to things like medical care. There is also physical custody; as the name suggests, this involves the parent who is actually physically responsible for the care of the child.
Legal and physical custody are handled in certain ways. Sometimes, one parent is given full custody. In this type of situation, the other parent might be given visitation rights but does not have any form of custody of the child. In other cases, joint custody — in which both parents have equal legal and physical custody of the child — is seen as being the option.
Are There Any Additional Concerns?
Along with being concerned about the custody arrangement for your child, you might have other concerns as well. For example, if you have sole custody of your child, you may want to look into filing a petition for child support. If you choose to do this and if the petition is granted, then the other parent will be required to pay child support to you. This money is granted to help you take care of the child. The amount that is paid is based on a few factors, including the other parent’s income and ability to pay.
A number of different issues can pop up when it comes to child custody. For example, if you and the other parent were never married, it will need to be established that the male parent is the actual paternal parent of the child. This can be done in a couple of different ways; you and the other parent can fill out a form that acknowledges paternity, or a DNA test might be conducted.
Once a child support petition is granted, you have to worry about whether the payments will actually be made if you are the custodial parent. There are steps that can be taken if the other parent does not pay child support, and it is your right to take these steps to help ensure that you receive the child support payments that you are entitled to.
Why It’s Essential to Work with a Lawyer When Establishing Child Custody
You might think that you can handle matters of child custody and child support on your own. However, these situations can be more tricky than you might think. It can be very easy for emotions to run high when there are children involved, and you and the other parent might not get along very well when going through a family court case. This can make it difficult for you to come to an agreement on things, but an attorney can help protect your rights and the rights of your child. Your Nassau County child custody lawyers will talk to you about your rights and will help you ensure that they are respected while keeping your child in mind at all times.
What To Do if You’re Unhappy with Current Child Custody or Child Support Orders?
If you have already gone through family court, there may be existing child custody and child support orders. If you are unhappy with the orders that are in place, you should know that there might be steps that you can take to make changes. This is something that your attorney can help you with.
Handling child custody and child support can be tough for any parent. If you are currently in the midst of handling family court matters, we can help. Contact us today, and we’ll schedule an appointment so that we can discuss your situation with you and can help you determine how to proceed. Then, if you choose to hire us, you will know that you have legal representation that you can count on.
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What is custody?
Most people have heard the term “custody” as it relates to children and the law. The term “custody” involves two aspects related to children, legal custody and physical custody. When parents have a dispute regarding the visitation, control and care of children, it is handled in a child custody action. Child custody lawyers represent parents in these matters to seek resolution of disputes involving children.
Legal custody involves the decision making rights for children. I a person has sole legal custody, then that person is the only one who can make important decisions for a child. The decisions include medical, education, religious, and various child rearing choices. If two parties share joint legal custody of a children, then the two parties equally share the ability to make decisions for the child. In situations of joint legal custody, the parties must attempt to work together to make decisions for the child’s interest.
Physical custody involves where the child lives. If a child lives exclusively with one party, then that person has sole physical custody. If a child spends time with both parents, it is referred to as joint physical custody. Joint physical custody does not necessarily mean that the child spends equal amounts of time with both parents. Rather, joint physical custody means that both parents have significant periods of time when the child is in their care.
If parents cannot reach an agreement about custody, a court may determine how to allocate custody. When a court determines custody, it considers a variety of different factors. Ultimately, the court attempts to allocate custody in a manner that serves the interest of the child. Some of the factors that may be included in a custody determination include:
- The child’s wishes
- The character of the parents
- The stability of the parent’s home/life
- criminal histories
- Substance abuse issues
- Financial resources
- A child’s relationship with the parent
- A child’s ties to the community
A judge is given broad discretion in what they consider to determine custody.
A child custody attorney assists parents by providing legal advice and representation in a custody case. A child custody attorney will know how to comply with the court procedures. They will also be able to advise you about the applicable laws that may affect your case.
If you cannot reach a custody agreement, then a child custody attorney can argue your case to the court. An attorney will know what evidence to present to the court to support your position and will ensure that the other parent follows the applicable rules.
Child custody determinations may be modified in some instances when there has been a material change in circumstances. What constitutes a material change in circumstances depends on a variety of factors. A child custody attorney can assess your situation to see if you may qualify for modification. If there are sufficient facts to pursue modification, then a child custody attorney can guide you through the process and advocate for your requested change in custody.
Child custody disputes can be complicated, so it is important to have an attorney who is experienced in child custody legal matters. An attorney can draw upon their knowledge and experience to help you understand what is happening and what to expect.
If you have questions about child custody, are involved in a pending custody case, or wish to pursue modification of a custody judgment, then contact a child custody lawyer. An experienced NYC divorce lawyer can review your situation and provide you with legal assistance.
Can I request a new judge for our custody case?
When two divorcing spouses disagree about the custody of their children, the divorce can quickly turn acrimonious and hostile. Battles between the spouses tend to be heated. In many cases, a divorcing spouse may feel that the judge has a leaning toward one parent or another. Without proof, though, nothing can come of this suspicion.
If you want a new judge to preside over your custody case, you need proof that your current judge is biased toward one of the sides. When judges show favoritism, the favored party doesn’t tend to complain. It’s the non-favored party who feels as though they’re being cheated. Putting judicial favoritism into words and documenting it is a daunting task. You may think you saw the judge smirk or subtly glare, but these little cues aren’t enough to prove bias. Unless you have well documented proof of bias, the court might believe you’re acting childishly.
Judges Aren’t Always Impartial
It’s true that judges go through a very difficult selection process. If the world were perfect, all judges would act with perfectly fair and impartial conduct. However, judges are human beings. Human beings are capable of making mistakes or having bias, sometimes unconscious bias.
There have been some cases where the judge has a conflict of interest. They know the family member of one of the spouses, or one of the spouses’ close friends. Their outside third-party knowledge of the case has tainted their ability to objectively consider the facts. Judges are supposed to refuse cases that include conflicts of interest, but this doesn’t always happen.
You don’t always know what’s happening behind the scenes. If you’re struggling to be heard in your custody battle, you feel like the judge is biased against you without cause, and you aren’t sure where to turn, be aware that you can take some steps. You should also be aware that these are drastic steps that, if handled poorly, could have catastrophic ramifications for your case.
These are the steps to follow if you want a new judge presiding over your case.
First: Talk to your attorney.
Your attorney is experienced in navigating all aspects of the divorce court. They may be familiar with the judge already. If you believe the judge is biased, talk to your lawyer about it. Give all the details you can regarding the reasons you believe there has been bias. In cases where the judge is unduly favoring one party, the attorney will also have noticed signs. Between the two of you, you can document everything about the judge’s behavior and unfair rulings.
Second: Go on a fact-gathering mission.
If you’re trying to have a judge recused, you need to have concrete proof that wrongdoing occurred. Believing that a judgment call was unfair is not enough to constitute proof. There are hundreds of divorce cases every day with rulings that one or both spouses believe are unfair.
You need something concrete enough to convince people that you aren’t biased. Many people will be predisposed to believing you’re just angry about not getting what you want in court. If you find a connection between your judge and your spouse, that can be grounds for recusing. It’s vital that you have unquestionable documentation supporting your motion.
Third: File your motion for requesting another judge.
You’ll need to request another judge by filing an official motion. The motion needs to include all the details about why your current judge must not preside over the case. If the judge reads the motion and agrees that there has been bias, they may voluntarily leave the case. However, the judge is not required to leave voluntarily.
In cases where the judge chooses to ignore the motion, you’ll need to make an official request to the court. When this is the case, copies of the relevant paperwork will need to be given to all involved parties. If the court feels the proof is sufficient, they can remove the judge. With that said, the court doesn’t have to grant your request. If your motion is overruled, the original judge will continue to preside over the case, and they may bear ill will toward you.
Fourth: Face the outcome.
If your motion to recuse the judge fails, you will have really given them a reason to be biased against you. This might result in you being punished in the custody battle.
Alternatively, if a new judge presides, you may find yourself being issued a much more fair ruling.