Family Attorney Free Consultation Near Me – Family law and matrimonial matters are two (2) of the most voluminous and contentious matters discussed in the New York State court system. This is especially true when divorce, custody and visitation, child support, spousal support (alimony), protective orders (family crime petitions), or abuse and neglect cases are at issue. We also represent families in estate administration and probate matters.
In this section, a New York family lawyer and a Manhattan divorce attorney from our office combine to give you background on both New York family law and matrimonial law. We hope this gives you a better understanding of the law, the court system and how to protect you and your family’s rights
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In New York State, there are two (2) courts that have jurisdiction to hear family law cases: the New York Family Court and the Supreme Court, Matrimonial Division. Both courts can hear all family cases with one exception. Only the Supreme Court can hear divorce cases.
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We begin with family law cases that are common to both courts. They are as follows: Child custody and visitation applications, paternity, child support, family crime (protection order), petitions for maintenance or spousal support, custody petitions, and abuse and neglect. Please note at the end of this essay that if you still have questions or require representation, Stephen Bilkis & Associates, PLLC offers a free consultation with a New York family law attorney to further explain or answer any family law or divorce questions you may have. The company has locations throughout New York and Long Island. Call us at 800.696.9529 to meet in Manhattan, Bronx, Queens, Brooklyn, Nassau County and Suffolk County.
The family court will give the right to any person who has a blood relationship, a close personal or intimate relationship or has a child in common. We’ll start with the most common type of connection; parents who have a child together.
Paternity The threshold in all family matters concerning the child is paternity. Is it established? This can be done in many different ways, including DNA testing, a birth certificate or other documentation, and/or admission, including holding the child up to the public as one’s own. (For more information on paternity click New York Paternity Lawyer.)
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The legal standard New York family courts use to determine custody is “what is in the best interest of the child.” Once paternity is established, custody and visitation issues are resolved along with child support. We will first focus on child custody to determine who should be the custodian, and thus the parent entitled to child support. Every New York family lawyer in our office advises each of our clients that there are three (3) main types of child custody:
Full custody gives that parent the authority to make all decisions about the child without the other’s consent. It is the sole obligation of the parent with full custody to inform the non-custodial parent of important matters and decisions that are pending regarding the child. Joint custody is exactly what it means; the non-custodial parent gets equal decision-making power over all important matters in the child’s life such as education, medical and religious decisions. The last type of custody is Residential Custody and it gives the right to the receiving parent to have the child with them.
As any New York family law attorney will tell you, the next step in a family court case, after paternity and child custody has been established, is child support. If there is a child custody order or child custody case, the court has most likely issued a temporary custody order. In any case, that guardian is now entitled to child support. Hence, the non-custodial parent is obligated to pay child support. Standard child support guidelines are as follows: one child = 17%, two children = 25%, three children = 29%, four children = 31%, five children or more = 33%. There are many issues that the court assesses, including day care costs, medical expenses, etc. to determine the final child support amount. (For more information use the following child support attorney link)
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Another important issue that the family court will consider is access to a child for the non-custodial parent. While most people are aware that the “Standard Visa” is every other weekend, alternating holidays and four weeks off, our New York family lawyers will tell you that many judges have become more flexible and liberal with visitation if they believe there is a good parent who requires additional visitation. Part of the reason for the family court’s new stance is that courts believe it is in the child’s best interest to have both parents actively involved in the child’s life. (To read more about Visitation, follow the link to New York Visitation Attorney.)
Any divorce attorney will tell you that all divorce cases are heard in the New York State Supreme Court. Every borough has a section whether it’s in New York (Manhattan, Brooklyn, Queens, Bronx or Staten Island). Long Island (Nassau County and Suffolk County) has its own Superior Court matrimonial divisions. Any Manhattan divorce attorney will tell you that a divorce is the legal termination of a marriage. Be aware that there is no common law marriage in New York State.
A requirement for a divorce to be granted in New York is that there must be grounds for divorce. Cause is the legal pretext for dissolution of marriage, namely desertion, constructive abandonment, and cruel and unusual treatment, which are the most common grounds for divorce in New York State. If there are children in the marriage, the process discussed above regarding custody, visitation, paternity, and child support continues accordingly. After grounds and child issues, the next most contested issue in divorce is “property division.” A Manhattan divorce attorney will tell you that this covers three (3) main areas; Equitable distribution (equitable distribution of assets), alimony or maintenance of spouses and residents of the home.
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Equitable distribution covers all assets acquired from the date of marriage onwards. However, there may be exceptions such as inheritance and “big marriage” exclusions. Asset valuation issues may arise. Property division can be contested, but in most cases it is a 50/50 split.
. Maintenance is awarded in cases where there is a primary “breadwinner”. If a spouse has given up a career or put their career on hold, the court’s main goal is to award alimony in hopes of compensating the spouse and giving the spouse time to re-establish (when possible) a career that was delayed or interrupted. The court will determine a period of time for this type of alimony, if they believe that the party can re-establish his career, and that is the so-called.
. If the court considers that there is no possibility to restore the lost career or to establish a career for this spouse, the court can issue
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Warrant, payable on husband’s life. (There is no alimony in New York State.)
Other areas within family law are family crime or protective order petitions. A protective order can arise when an emotional situation either erupts into violence or the threat of violence. As any New York family law attorney from our office will tell you, these types of cases can turn from family law to criminal very quickly. In the blink of an eye, you can go from needing a New York family lawyer to needing a New York criminal lawyer. Many times the allegations are domestic violence (ie assault, child abuse, or even sexual assault. These cases must be handled with special care because testimony in a family court or divorce court case can be used in a prosecution by the District attorney For more information about an order of protection in family court, follow this link New York Protection Attorney
When there are allegations of abuse and neglect involving children, ACS (Administration for Children’s Services) or Child Protective Services will investigate the case.
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If the child abuse allegations are in Manhattan, the Bronx, Queens, or Brooklyn, ACS has jurisdiction over the matter. If allegations of abuse or neglect occur on Long Island, or in Nassau County or Suffolk County, Child Protective Services (CPS) handles the case. They have the authority to remove the child or children from the household if, after their investigation, they believe the child/children are in danger. After the agencies complete their investigations, they can “show the party” or have the report returned as founded. (“Indicating that the party” means that there is a finding against the party). After a finding of abuse and neglect, the “culprit” may
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