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Experienced Family Lawyers

Long Island Child Custody Attorneys

Facing a Custody Battle in NY? Get Experience on Your Side!

Child custody matters in New York are emotionally charged. Together with the fact that custody decisions will directly affect your child’s future and well-being, these decisions can be difficult to deal with from a legal standpoint. That is why you need a compassionate and experienced custody attorney on Long Island to fight for your rights and the best interests of your children.

Our Mission Statement

We believe that no greater vocation can be had by woman or man than to be a parent. Our purpose is to promote the equality of that vocation and to offer men and women an opportunity for the mutual support to pursue their rights.

Compassionate Counsel. Aggressive Advocacy.

With more than 90 years of combined experience and a practice devoted to matrimonial law, the team of Long Island child custody lawyers at Friedman & Friedman PLLC, Attorneys at Law understands New York child custody laws—and has a personal point of view on these matters, as well.

Our experienced child custody attorneys take on custody disputes and all other divorce and family law issues for clients across Long Island, New York. These matters includes fathers’ rights and grandparents’ rights in regards to child custody matters.

Don't wait to discuss your case with a child custody lawyer near you. Schedule your child custody case consultation online or by calling (516) 688-0088 today!

Determining Child Custody in New York

At Friedman & Friedman PLLC, Attorneys at Law, we believe that a family can and should be a loving and safe environment for children – both before and after a divorce or legal separation.

Our Long Island custody lawyers approach each NY child custody case from this point of view and fight zealously to help our clients resolve their custody disputes effectively and with the least amount of emotional turmoil possible.

In New York, custody disputes are resolved when the Court determines what is in the best interest of the child or children involved. In most cases, the Court will work to keep both parents involved in a child’s life; however, some factors which will influence this decision.

Factors considered in a NY child custody decision include:

  • Status Quo – Is there currently a custody agreement that has been developed and used by the parents?
  • Siblings – The court usually works to keep siblings together, but at times the needs of siblings will differ and thus the court could decide to split them between parents.
  • Stability of Environment – The court will usually prefer to keep the child in the same environment, community, school, etc.
  • Wealth of the Parent – The court will typically prefer to award custody to a place where the child has suitable space, a safer neighborhood, adequate food and clothing, etc.
  • Parental Stability – Are both parents stable? Whether a parent suffers from an alcohol or drug problem or mental instability will influence the court’s decision regarding custody. A criminal history, history of abuse or history of promiscuity may influence the decision the court makes.
  • Preference of the Child – While underage children cannot legally speak for themselves, the court will take their preferences into consideration and weigh them carefully against all additional factors.
  • Relationship with the Parent Has one parent build a much stronger relationship with the child? Has the child spent the majority of their time with one parent and hardly any time with the other parent before the custody case? These factors can affect the outcome.
  • Relationship with others in the Parent’s Household – Even if a child has a strong relationship with one parent, if the child has poor or damaging relationships with other members of that parent's household, then it may have a negative effect on that parent's ability to obtain custody.

Can a Child Decide Which Parent They Live With?

In New York, a child cannot ultimately choose which parent they live with regardless of their age. In a custody case, a judge can take the child's preference into consideration, but in the end they will decide based on what is in the best interests of the child.

Some say that a 12-year-old child can have a say in which parent they live with, which is somewhat true in that a judge will consider the preference of an older child; however, minors cannot decide where they live until they reach the age of majority – 18 years old.

Can Child Custody Be Changed?

After child custody has been decided, there are occasions where it can later be changed. This is known as "modification of custody." In order to have your custody order modified, you must be able to show a judge that you have experienced a "significant change in circumstances."

Reasons to modify a child custody order include:

  • The custodial parent needs to move long-distance with your child (move-away cases)
  • The non-custodial parent is now in a better place to care for the child and wants to seek joint or sole custody
  • There is reason to believe that the custodial parent is not able to properly care for the child (child abuse, substance abuse, mental health concerns, etc.)

Visit our "Modification of Child Custody" page to learn more. Our child custody lawyers on Long Island can help if you need to get your custody order modified by the court.

Contact a Long Island Custody Lawyer

Your choice of a child custody attorney will directly impact the outcome of your custody case. Not only can a skilled attorney help the Court understand why you should get custody, but your custody lawyer can help you understand what you should and should not do in order to best help your chances of getting custody. For this reason, we encourage you to discuss your case with our team today.

Need a child custody attorney on Long Island? Contact Friedman & Friedman PLLC, Attorneys at Law today!

Let Us Provide the Compassionate Care You Deserve.

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