Experienced Brooklyn Divorce and Family Law Attorney Ready to Help During Difficult Time
Getting divorced can be one of the most stressful times in a person’s life. There may be minor children involved, significant property and other assets, along with the realization that you are separating from someone whom you potentially spent years living together. You are now confronted with the significant task of making difficult decisions concerning the division of property, money, and custody.
If you and your spouse have decided to part ways, it is essential you retain the services of an experienced Brooklyn family lawyer who understands the unique issues of your case, and who specializes in reaching amicable, stress-free divorces.
Overview of New York Divorce Law
In New York, you have the option to file a “no-fault” divorce, meaning at least one spouse states that the relationship has “irrevocably broken down” for at least six months. However, a ‘no-fault’ divorce cannot be granted unless the couple has agreed upon all issues, including property division and child custody (if applicable), or the court has made an order concerning the issues.
If a divorcing couple cannot decide how to divide their marital property, a court will likely need to decide how to distribute it “equitably.” This means the court will consider what the fairest distribution is. Often the result is property is divided on a 50-50 basis.
In New York, neither parent has a prevalent right to custody of their child, or children. The child can live with either or both of their parents. Alternatively, if the parents cannot reach an amicable custody agreement, the court will make a decision based on the best interests of the child. There are two types of custody:
- Physical custody
- Legal custody
How Physical Custody Works
Physical custody refers to where and with whom the child lives most of the time. Generally, a court will only allow one parent to have physical custody. The other parent is instead granted visitation rights. The court will always decide custody arrangements based on what is in the best interests of the child.
How Legal Custody Works
Legal custody refers to the rights of the parents to decide on how they raise their child. For example, decisions regarding education, medical care, and religion.
Parents will usually be granted joint legal custody, even if only one parent has physical custody.
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Starting custody proceedings
In many situations, divorcing parents can agree with whom their child should live and how they should be raised. However, sometimes the parents are unable to agree, and in these situations, the only option may be to instruct a family attorney to file for custody.
In New York, the majority of custody and visitation cases are opened in the Family Court. However, if the parents are married, custody will be decided as part of the divorce proceedings in the Supreme Court.
When deciding custody arrangements in court, the judge may order a caseworker to visit the family’s homes and write a report assessing the suitability of each. The judge may also appoint a Law Guardian to represent the child in court and to ensure their preferences are heard.
Upon hearing all the evidence, the judge will make a final custody order. Unfortunately, some parents are unable to accept the outcome of custody hearings. If your former partner is ignoring the order, they may be found in contempt of court and their visitation rights could be revoked. You should always consult your family lawyer in these situations as they can advise you and uphold your rights as bestowed upon you by the custody order.
Domestic Violence Issues
Domestic violence is taken extremely seriously by the courts. If you feel threatened or harassed by a family member, a family lawyer can help you file a Family Offense Petition against them in the Family Court. As a result, an Order of Protection may be granted, preventing the family member from coming within a certain distance of you.
Now is the Time to Retain the Services of an Experienced Brooklyn Divorce Attorney
As you can see, there are a whole host of issues related to getting divorced, which is why it makes sense to hire a seasoned attorney to help guide you through the process. The Bukh Law Firm, PLLC, stands ready to help in your time of need. We strive to meet the legal needs of Brooklyn residents, which includes handling a wide variety of legal affairs and issues associated with family law and domestic relations. All of our attorneys are committed to being accessible in the spirit of the communities we serve.
The staff is always available for a consultation and will evaluate the best available course of action in your matter. The firm’s office, located in the center of Brooklyn, New York, is within the comfortable confines of NYC and all major routes of transportation.