Child Custody Cases in Brooklyn
A divorce is often hardest on the children. Through vigorous negotiation, parties to a divorce can sometimes agree to a child custody arrangement that is best for their child.
When the court needs to decide on child custody, it is vital that you receive representation from experienced Brooklyn family law lawyers. You need to make sure your attorneys understand the laws, can uncover evidence, and present a clear and compelling argument to the court.
Is your spouse a threat to the safety of your child? If so, you may need to argue for sole physical custody.
Is your former spouse unfit to make decisions? You may want to secure sole legal custody as well.
Visitation and custody issues go hand in hand. When one parent secures sole custody of a child, the other parent usually has the right to visitation. The factors involved in visitation arrangements are similar to those in custody decisions.
Brooklyn courts have a wide range of discretion when deciding what is best. Judges must balance the best interest of the child, the child’s right to have a meaningful relationship with both parents, and any conditions that might exist to make it unsafe or unwise to allow visitation.
In New York, judges have flexibility to award visitation. Visitation will be either unsupervised or supervised depending on a given situation. If there is reason, a judge may require that a third-party professional supervise the visits.
Child visitation becomes a hot-button issue when one parent has a history of questionable behavior. The following can make child visitation decisions particularly important:
- A parent has a drug addiction
- A parent has a history of untreated mental illness
- A parent has a history of violence or domestic abuse
- A parent has a criminal history
- A parent has made threats to take a child
- A parent manufactures “evidence” to withhold visitation
- A parent refuses to adhere to a court ordered child visitation schedule
- A parent refuses to allow access to child in violation of an order or agreement
- Parental alienation by one of the parents
In all of these situations it is crucial that you have an experienced family law attorney representing you. You should be confident that your family law lawyer knows how to fight hard to enforce your rights. When the safety of your child is at stake, you must work with an experienced child custody lawyer.
Child Support Issues
Financial concerns are common in family law cases. One party to the divorce may want to maximize the amount of support received, while the other wants to ensure that child support is fair and reasonable. Divorce is fraught with anxiety, much of which arises from concern about how you will support your family with increased expenses from living apart.
Child support is money paid by one parent to the other for the care of a child or children. The payments are designated for things such as clothing, school supplies, room and board and other things the child might need for his or her emotional and physical well-being. New York has a very specific formulas and rules for calculating child support.
Maintenance or spousal support is money for your former or soon-to-be former spouse. Often called alimony or spousal maintenance, these payments are designed to ensure that he or she can continue living in a manner consistent with life during the marriage.
Usually, spousal support is paid by the one with a higher income than the other, however it is discretionary, not mandatory. It rests on a variety of considerations including income, potential income, age, health, property, and a range of other factors.
Because Brooklyn judges have wide discretion in awarding alimony payments, you must be sure that evidence presented is accurate. Family law cases in Brooklyn can be very challenging when it comes to spousal support. This is where we often find:
- A spouse submitting false tax returns
- A spouse failing to disclose a source of income
- A spouse refusing to provide proof of all income
- A spouse “taking losses” to reduce income
You need an attorney who knows how to analyze records and present evidence to ensure that the spousal support is what you seek.
Orders of Protection
Domestic violence is a real issue, and if you are facing it, you are not alone. There is no shame. Others have been falsely accused of domestic violence as leverage for a settlement or to punish the other spouse.
When you are contemplating or in the middle of a divorce, domestic violence can make a difficult situation seem unbearable.
Orders of protection exist to help fearful spouses who are trying to exit a relationship. If your spouse has been abusive or threatening, you can apply for an order of protection. If you are falsely accused, we can help defend that claim against you.
There are emergency orders of protection, temporary orders of protection and permanent orders of protection. All of them serve the purpose of keeping you and your family safe during a divorce or other situation.
Nothing is more important than your safety. You need a lawyer who understands issues surrounding domestic violence. Whether you have been accused of domestic violence or have been the target of domestic violence, we can help.