Raising children in New York is not always an easy task. When parents live together they often times share in the responsibilities of raising the child as well as sharing in the joys the child brings as well. When parents divorce they no longer live together and no longer are able to share in the day to day responsibilities. However, both parents may still want to parent the child, but they may not agree on how this should be accomplished.
So in these situations a child custody order is usually issued. These orders determine both legal and physical custody. Legal custody refers to decision making for the child for major decisions such as what school the child will attend or health care decisions for the child. Physical custody determines where the child will live.
These decisions are made by analyzing a number of factors. These include, but are not limited to, which parent was the primary caregiver, the ability of each parent to provide for the child's needs, the mental and physical health of the child and parents, whether there was domestic abuse, the wishes of the child and others.
In addition to determining custody, the court must establish parenting time as well. Parenting time is when the child will be in the care of each parent. Usually both parents are entitled to parenting regardless of which parent has custody of the child. However, certain conditions can be put on parenting time to ensure the safety of the child. The visits could be supervised or in a therapeutic setting or be limited to a particular location.
These decisions are based on the specific facts of each case as every family situation in New York in unique. Our firm understands the factors used to determine child custody and knows how the facts of a specific family situation will be analyzed. We understand how important a parent's relationship with a child is and work to keep that relationship after a split. For more information on how we handle these matters please visit our child custody and visitation page on our website.