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Post Trial Applications need to go to the Appellate Division

Post Trial Applications In a case before Justice Jeffrey Goodstein, who sits in the divorce Supreme Court part in Nassau County, a husband brought an application to set aside a provision in a 2017 court decision after trial awarding a wife a $226,042.00 money judgment for support arrears. He also sought to modify the court’s decision crediting him for $200,907.68 in support payments. The court allegedly failed to give him the appropriate credit among other things.

The Wife’s Position

The wife opposed the husband’s application. She brought a cross-application to allow her to trade cash assets awarded her in exchange for the husband’s equity in the marital residence. She claimed it was essential for the parties’ special needs son to remain in the marital residence, to stay in the same school district, keep his friends and maintain the same routine.

The Trial Judge had Retired

Justice Goodstein, in a matter of first impression, ruled that under the circumstances presented in this case the prospective of a trial judge, now retired, was essential to the appropriate evaluation of the parties’ motions. Since the trial judge was retired, Justice Goodstein found he had no authority to rule on these post trial motions. The decision regarding all financial issues was resolved by the decision after trial. Therefore, under both statutory law and case law any change or challenge to the trial court’s decision would have to be made to the Appellate Division, an Appeals Court. Only the Appellate Division could determine if the modification of the trial court’s decision was appropriate. He therefore denied both parties’ applications.

Conclusion

In this case there were issues that should have been dealt with before the original trial judge. Parties in divorce cases should always resolve all issues when they settle or take a case to trial.

schlissel-headshotElliot S. Schlissel has been representing parties in divorce and family court cases in the courts throughout the Metropolitan New York area for more than 35 years. He can be reached at 800-344-6431 or e-mailed at Elliot@sdnylaw.com.

No Order of Protection Against Former Boyfriend

Against Former BoyfriendMaliha A. brought a proceeding in the Family Court of Queens County before Judge John Hunt seeking an order of protection against her former boyfriend Onu M. Her petition claimed she had a bitter breakup and Onu was harassing her. Onu and Maliha had entered into new romantic relationships. Malihu had told a court attorney she was not afraid of Onu. At one point she sought to withdraw her application for an order of protection but at a later point she denied to the court that she wanted the petition withdrawn.

The Case Goes to Trial

Maliha stated she wanted to move forward with the petition and the case was eventually set down for trial. Maliha had posted a number of tweets on a twitter and even though she did not mention Onu’s name these tweets were about him. Onu had texted their agreement not to communicate with Malihu. Malihu testified that she was never threatened by Onu and she was not afraid of him, but she still wanted an order of protection because “as there is no telling what he might say or do.”

Application Dismissed

Judge Hunt dismissed Maliha’s petition. It failed to meet the statutory burden rising to a level of a family offense.

Conclusion

If an application is made to a court for an order of protection there must be a basis in law and the facts must substantiate the basis in law for a judge to grant this type of petition.

schlissel-headshotElliot S. Schlissel, Esq. is a father’s rights attorney representing fathers throughout the Metropolitan New York area. He can be reached at 800-344-6431 or e-mailed at Elliot@sdnylaw.com.

Mother’s Relocation to Florida Denied

Mother's Relocation to Florida DeniedA mother had brought a Family Court case seeking to relocate to Florida. She wanted to bring her child with her to Florida. The father had opposed this application. The mother lost her application in the Family Court. She thereafter appealed the denial of allowing her to relocate to Florida.

The Appeals Court Decision

The Appeals Court also denied the mother’s request to relocate and affirmed the prior decision of the Family Court. The Appeals Court took note the record did not show the mother’s plan to relocate was a real plan. The record was insufficient to establish the child’s best interests would be served by allowing the mother and the parties’ child to move to Florida.

The Mother’s Circumstances

The mother was unemployed. She had no family members or extended family in Florida. There was no information as to her having a job in Florida, what town she wished to live in and where the child would go to school. The mother claimed the father would be able to visit the child in Florida. However, the father’s work schedule and personal life were likely to prevent him from having any significant contact with his child if the mother was able to move with the child to Florida. It was also unlikely the child would be able to come back to New York to spend substantial time visiting with the father.

The mother claimed her financial and economic situation would greatly improve if she relocated to Florida. However, she did not show even if she received economic benefit, the parties’ child would benefit from this relocation.

Conclusion

If one parent seeks to relocate and the relocation has a negative impact on the other parent, the relocating parent must present a very detailed case as to how the relocation will benefit the child of the parties.

schlissel-headshotElliot S. Schlissel is a father’s rights lawyer representing fathers in custody, relocation, visitation, support proceedings throughout the Metropolitan New York area. He can be reached for consultation at 800-344-6431 or e-mailed at Elliot@sdnylaw.com.

Mother’s Parental Access Suspended

Mother’s-ParentalActing Supreme Court Justice Stacey Bennett sitting in Nassau County had a case before her in 2013 where a father filed an emergency proceeding seeking to suspend a mother’s parental access. In addition, he sought to suspend all communication and contact with their daughter of every type and nature. Judge Bennett had granted the father a temporary order suspending the mother’s parenting access. A hearing was scheduled.

The Mother’s Argument

The mother argued her retweeting a photograph of her daughter did not violate the court order. She also claimed the use of hash tags in electronic media was not communication and also did not violate a court order. An extensive hearing took place.

The Judge’s Decision

Judge Bennett granted the father’s motion to suspend the mother’s parental access to the daughter of any type or kind. This also included telephone contact, skype, e-mail and all social medial contact. The mother requested she be given supervised visitation. Judge Bennett denied this also. She referred to testimony from mental health professionals. She found the mother suffered from a serious personality disorder with severe and maladaptive histrionic borderline narcistic and anti-social features. Judge Bennett’s decision stated the mother histrionic actions were found in her uncontrollable need for attention.

schlissel-headshotElliot S. Schissel, Esq. Is the managing partner of Schlissel DeCorpo LLP. The firm represents clients in divorce and family law cases throughout the Metropolitan New York area. He can be reached at 800-344-6431 or by e-mail at Elliot@sdnylaw.com

Parental Alienation

Parental-Alienation

Parental alienation is inappropriate behavior by one parent whether it be the father or the mother which is designed to have a negative impact on the relationship between the children and the other parent. It can be considered a type of brainwashing. Parental Alienation is the manipulation of children by one parent for the purpose of preventing or destroying a warm and loving relationship the children have with the other parent. Parental alienation is harmful to the children. Parental alienation has been known to cause both emotional and psychological damage to children. The parent that is victimized loses his or her ability to maintain a relationship with the children through no fault of his or her own. In some cases allegations of sexual or physical abuse are part of the parental alienation scheme.

Parental Alienation Syndrome

A child subject to parental alienation often develop parental alienation syndrome and develop an intense dislike for one of their parents even though there is no logical reason for the child’s behavior to that parent. If you suspect the other parent is engaging in parental alienation, you should take immediate legal action to stop this inappropriate conduct. The longer the parental alienation continues on the more difficult it is to get the child back on the right track.

Custody Lawsuits and Parental Alienation

Parental alienation can be used as a method by a litigant in a custody case to have a negative impact on a parent’s ability to obtain custody of his or her children. If you suspect this is going on bring this to your attorney’s attention. This should be dealt with immediately to stop it from destroying one parent’s relationship with the children.

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If you are a victim of parental alienation or your children are being victimized, contact the law office of Schlissel DeCorpo LLP. We have been helping parents throughout the Metropolitan New York area to deal with parental alienation for more than 3 decades. We can be reached at 800-344-6431 or you can e-mail us at: Elliot@sdnylaw.com.

Changing Custody

Changing-Custody

Custody orders and judgments can be changed and/or modified. The standard for changing or modifying a custody order is to establish there has been a change in circumstances and this change in circumstances is sufficient to warrant a modification of the prior custody order. The change in circumstances must be of a substantial nature and it must be shown that modifying the custody order would be in the children’s best interests.

Jurisdictional Issues

Sometimes the prior custody order is amended by a court located in a different state. In these cases it must be established that New York is the appropriate jurisdiction for the proceeding to challenge the prior custody order. There are specific rules with regard to which state is the appropriate state to handle the new proceedings involving custody. You should contact an experienced child custody attorney to first determine whether you are bringing the custody case in the correct state and secondly as to whether you can establish a basis for a significant change of circumstances which would lead a court to modify the custody order you are challenging.

Enhanced Parenting Time vs. Children and Custody

Changing which parent is the residential custodial parent requires the party challenging the prior custody order be in a position to make a significant evidentiary presentation to the court supporting his or her allegations. However, to obtain greater parenting time (visitation) with children does not require establishing a change in circumstances up to the standard necessary for modifying a custody order. Therefore, in many situations it is more appropriate to show it is in the children’s best interest that they spend more time with the non-residential custodial parent. Both parents are usually in a position to enhance the lives of their children.

schlissel-headshot

Elliot S. Schlissel is a father’s rights lawyer with more than 30 years of experience representing father’s in child custody, visitation and parenting rights cases. He can be reached at 516-561-6645, 718-350-2802 or 631-349-8262 at his firm. He can be emailed at Elliot@sdnylaw.com. Schlissel DeCorpo LLP maintains offices in Nassau, Suffolk and Queens Counties.

Father’s Request to Eliminate Child Support Denied

A father brought a proceeding in Queens County Family Court.  The case was assigned to Judge John Hunt.  The father requested his obligations to pay child support be terminated.  He claimed that the child had been constructively emancipated.  He further claimed the mother had been involved in parental interference that prevented him from maintaining a relationship with his daughter.

 

Litigation

The father and mother had been litigating various issues since 2007.  The father claimed he had no relationship with his daughter.  The mother testified she gave the father every opportunity to see his child but he never took any action to try to maintain a relationship with her.

 

The Judge’s Decision

Justice Hunt found the father had failed to meet his burden of proof showing there had been a change in circumstances sufficient to terminate his child support obligations.  Judge Hunt went on to find the father failed to establish the mother frustrated his relationship with his daughter.  He also found the child was not constructively emancipated.  The Judge’s decision instead found the father avoided his responsibility for his 18 year old daughter.  He made no efforts to form a relationship with her.  Judge Hunt found the father’s testimony to be fallacious and self-serving.  He also found if the father had waited an reasonable period of time which amounted to an inexcusable delay of 10 years in pursuing his remedies to submit these issue to the court.  The father’s application was dismissed.

 

Conclusion

Attorney Elliot SchlisselFathers seeking to terminate child support payments must make a detailed evidentiary presentation to courts.  Judges are very hesitant to eliminate child support payments without very strong evidentiary presentations.

 

Elliot S. Schlissel, Esq. is a father’s rights lawyer representing fathers on child support, visitation and custody matters for more than 4 decades.  He can be reached at Elliot@sdnylaw.com or 800-344-6437.

Wife Seeks Child Support

A wife had brought an application seeking child support about a year after the divorce case started.  The husband was a teacher.  He also owned a small construction company.  He made $152,000.00 in 2015.  During that same year the wife had earned $122,000.00.  In addition, the wife received substantial rental income from a variety of real estate interests she inherited from her family.

 

The Parties Separated

The parties separated in December 2013.  The father moved into the parties’ second home located in Sayville, Long Island.  She remained in their former marital residence.  The father had instead of paying the wife child support for the children, agreed to pay the Sayville property expenses.  In addition, he was paying medical and other insurance expenses included on both properties.  He contributed to the children’s expenses whenever wife requested as well as when the children were with him.

 

Child Support Denied

Justice Quinn sitting in Supreme Court in Suffolk County took note there were no allegations in wife’s submissions the children’s needs were not being met.  He further found the wife had substantial income above a teacher’s salary.  In addition, the husband’s health insurance covered all the parties’ medical expenses.  Justice Quinn found the children’s standard of living remained consistent.  Their financial and emotional needs were provided for.  He denied Elliot Schlisselthe wife’s application for child support.

 

Elliot S. Schlissel is a father’s rights lawyer representing fathers throughout the Metropolitan New York area for more than 3 decades. He can be reached at 800-344-6431 or e-mailed at Elliot@sdnylaw.com.

VIDEO: Postnuptial Agreements

NY Fathers Rights Attorney Elliot Schlissel discusses Post Nuptial Agreements.

Husband’s Contact with Wife’s Attorney Not a Violation of Order of Protection Received by Wife

Violation-of-Order-of-Protection-Received-by-Wife

Judge Javier Vargas sitting in a Family Court in King County recently had an unusual case presented to him. The wife had received an Order of Protection against her husband. He was ordered to stay away from the wife’s home and work and prohibited from communicating with wife, including any third party contact. The wife alleged husband and his private investigator had violated the portion of the Order of Protection preventing third party contact. She claimed her husband and his private investigator had communicated with her attorney through e-mail. She claimed these e-mails constituted harassment and coercion which were violations of the no communications provision of the Order of Protection which she had.

The Husband’s Position

The husband’s attorney argued that there were no allegations that either he or his investigator contacted the wife.

The Judge’s Decision

Judge Vargas took note that even presuming the allegations made by the wife in her petition were true and correct, the husband’s contact communicating with the wife’s counsel did not amount to threats or intimidation against the wife. He found there was no basis to find this conduct by the husband’s attorney constituted harassment or a family offense against the wife. He further found the husband’s attorney and the husband’s investigator were not third parties who were prohibited from communicating pursuant to the court order. Judge Vargas ruled the husband’s communications amounted to “hard edge bargaining negotiations and were not violations of the Order of Protection“.

Elliot S. Schlissel is a father’s rights attorney representing fathers throughout the Metropolitan New York area. He can be reached for a free consultation at 800-344-6431 or Elliot@sdnylaw.com.