Long Island Child Custody Lawyer

New York Visitation Attorney

Child Visitation
Child custody, support, and visitation decisions are among the most important aspects of  divorce and family court proceedings concerning children. Custody is a litigated issue, and the resulting decision is made by a judge. In New York, both parents are presumed to have an equal opportunity to gain custody, and the Court ultimately determines custody based on what it believes to be the best interests of the children.

Attorney For The Child

Since a child is normally not represented in a divorce or family court proceeding, the New York Court will appoint an attorney for the child (formally called a law guardian) to represent the child. The attorney for the child will represent the child in the custody / visitation proceeding.

New York law does not specifically favor joint custody, although a joint custody decision is possible if the court finds it to be in the best interest of the child. Joint custody court decisions are quite rare in New York, and custody is usually awarded to one parent.

Joint Custody

Joint custody is often worked out by attorneys in out-of-court settlements. The terms of the joint custody arrangement are included in either Separation Agreements or Settlement Agreements. Usually one parent is the residential custodial parent. Both parents have input in the child’s life. Both parents can be involved in making important decisions effecting the child’s health, education, religious training and welfare.

Father’s Rights and Child Custody

Custody decisions are made either by the Family Court or the Supreme Court. When a Court is presented with custody litigation they are supposed to make their decisions on a “gender-blind” basis. The following are a list of the criteria used by Courts in New York to determine in the best interest of the child or children who should be the residential custodial parent:

  • The best interest of the child or children;
  • Who was the nurturing parent;
  • Who has been the primary caretaker of the child;
  • Does the child have a preference between the parents as to who he or she wishes to live with;
  • Each of the parent’s ability to take care of and provide for the child’s emotional, physical, and mental needs;
  • The child’s age and current lifestyle;
  • Whether there is an emotional bond between the child or children and the parent;
  • The stability of each of the parents of the child;
  • The father’s and the mother’s ability to spend time with the children (this takes into consideration, employment and other issues that would keep each of the parents away from the child);
  • Both the child and the parents physical capabilities and mental health (this deals with issues involving either the child or parent having a disability);
  • Is there any history of child abuse or domestic violence between the parents?
  • The children’s relationship with other children of the marriage, other family members and the children’s ties to the community where they were raised.
  • Each parent should be willing to cooperate and work with the other parent to encourage the children to have a warm, loving relationship with the other parent.

In the end, the court makes the decision as to who shall have custody of the child based on the child’s best interest.

Child Visitation

The non-custodial parent is entitled to parenting time (visitation) with the child or children. The courts prefer parents to have liberal access to their children. It is important for a child’s development to have a good relationship with both of his or her parents.

Liberal Visitation Rights

In the past, fathers were very often forced to pay substantial portions of their income to support their children but were given minimal access when it came to visitation. This is no longer the case. It is especially important when a father is not the custodial parent of his child or children that his rights to have liberal visitation and access to school and medical records be protected.

Fathers Visitation Rights

A father is entitled to meet with the child or children’s, teachers, doctors, dentists and other medical providers. Fathers are entitled to attend school functions, athletic or sports events and have access to his child or children’s report cards and or progress reports.

The father should have input in the religious and social upbringing of his children. The father should be allowed to use his influence to provide structure and a male role model for his children.

We Will Help You Decide What is Right For You

The attorneys at the Law Offices of Elliot S. Schlissel have successfully handled more than a thousand child custody and child visitation cases. We can help everyone involved determine what is best for the children, taking into account the rights of all parties to a divorce.

International Parental Kidnapping

Our firm has unique experience in representing fathers where the mother has left the state of New York. We also have extensive experience in representing a parent where the other parent has taken the child or children out of the country and is preventing access to them. We have specifically been involved in international parental kidnaping cases where children have been illegally removed from the United States and brought to India, China, Cambodia and countries in Latin America and South America.

We have successfully fought for the rights of fathers who have served time in jail and know that it is in the best interest of their children to have a relationship with both parents. All of these cases require skill, effort and dedication beyond the scope of an average divorce.

Child Custody Proceedings

Litigation in either the Family Court or the Supreme Court involving child custody, visitation with the children and parenting time issues can be very emotionally draining and a painstaking, drawn out process. Our dedicated team of family law attorneys will sit down with you and provide you with a road map to obtain the results you are looking for and explain the process step by step as to how the courts will deal with this matter. We are the law firm you can trust with the most complex custody matters!

Experienced Nassau County Child Custody & Visitation Attorney

Contact us to discuss your child custody and visitation matters and our qualifications to represent you. Feel free to call toll free, any time, day or night, at 1-800-344-6431 or in Queens, Kings, New York, Richmond and the Bronx at 718-350-2802. You can also reach us in Nassau County or Suffolk County at 516-561-6645. We welcome your child custody and visitation inquires.

We have offices in Lynbrook and in Jamaica and we represent individuals throughout the New York metropolitan area, including Long Island, Nassau County, Suffolk County, Westchester County; and NYC’s five boroughs – The Bronx, Brooklyn, Manhattan, Queens, and Staten Island.

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