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Custody Legal Battles – Part II

father's rights attorney on Long IslandCustody Issues Before Litigating

Discuss settlement possibilities with your attorney and the realistic potential you will be successful if you take the custody case to trial. Custody battles can be emotionally taxing and expensive. Unless you are willing to fight the battle to the end and pay the expenses related to the battle, you should consider settling and obtaining the best possible parenting time access situation with your children.

Child Support and Custody Issues

It is extremely important the court not feel you are litigating the issue of custody to avoid paying child support. If the court feels the custody battle is a camouflaged issue involving child support it will have a devastatingly negative effect on your possibilities of obtaining residential custody of your children. It should be pointed out in New York, even if you settle a case with both of the parents having equal time with the children, the parent who earns more money will pay child support to the other parent.

Settling and Schedules

Work out your schedule prior to discussing settlement on custody and parenting time issues. Know what your schedule is. See if your family and friends’ can provide a support system. Have a back up system to help you take care of your children in the event you have an emergency, either related to work situations, illness, accidents of family members, or health issues involving yourself.

Parenting Time Schedule

The standard parenting schedule for the non-residential custodial parent is every other weekend, every other holiday, one or two dinners during the week and access on Father’s Day and the child’s birthday. If you are going to settle the case, negotiate for more than the standard visitation schedule. Customize the parenting time you spend with your children to deal with your work and life circumstances.

It is important you take into consideration the interaction your children have with your parents (their grandparents) and other family members. Children enjoy spending time with their cousins and other children of a similar age to them. Make sure your home is set up to provide a stimulating atmosphere for the children when they spend time with you. Children get bored very easily. You need to carefully take into consideration the children’s needs to be entertained, excited, and intellectually challenged.

Cordial Relationship With The Children’s Mother

This is a topic I have spent many hours discussing with my clients. You may be getting divorced because the children’s mother is a lousy human being. You may be divorcing her because you hate her guts. You also may be divorcing her because you consider her to be simply a pain in the butt. However, she is still always going to be the mother of your children! When the case is over, the court proceedings have finished, and the lawyers are gone, you are going to need to deal with her. This may require more character, patience, and reasonableness than you even needed to use when you interacted with her while you were married. Take into consideration your communication with the children’s mother promotes the children’s best interest. Put your children’s best interests over and above the anger, anxiety, and problems you have with their mother. Deal with her as best as you can. Even if you litigate a very nasty custody battle, at the end of the day you are still going to need to deal with her. Get used to it. For the sake of your children, put your pride, anger and aggravation aside!child custody lawyer

About Elliot S. Schlissel

Elliot S. Schlissel, Esq. has spent more that 30 years representing individuals in matrimonial and family law cases.