Divorce proceedings can be complicated, especially when there are children involved. Generally, the terms of a divorce or separation are decided by the parents on behalf of the child(ren), such as where they will live and attend school, as well as what religious beliefs (if any) will be practiced. If both parties cannot come to an agreement about the terms of custody, the court will be required to step in to make the final decisions.
When a legal separation has been initiated by the respective parties, but a custodial agreement has not been made, the judge will consider several factors surrounding each parent to ensure that the custody ruling is in the best interest of the child(ren). According to the New York Unified Court System, establishing custody includes evaluating factors such as:
- Quality of Living Environments
- Documented Abuse (Domestic Violence)
- Willingness to Allow for Joint Custody or Visitation Rights
- Mental and Emotional Support of the Child(ren)
- Stable Income
- Physical and Mental Health of the Parents/Caregivers
- Current Living Arrangements of the Child(ren)
- Who is the primary caregiver?
- Will the child(ren) be separated from other siblings?
- How long has the child(ren) resided in their current environment?
If awarded full-custodial rights over the child(ren), the other party will be responsible for providing child support to help cover necessary expenses. The amount of child support is governed by statute and is usually determined by the courts, however, should the separated couple come to an agreement on their own, the court will review the said agreement to ensure that the child(ren)’s needs will be met.
If you are considering a divorce, contact an experienced New York divorce and family law attorney. The attorneys at Martin Grossbach, P.C., serve Westchester, Rockland, New York City, and all surrounding areas.Please contact us today at 914-631-6666 to schedule an initial consultation.