In New York, a child at 18 is no longer subject to a custody order. He or she has the option of going wherever they wish. At the same time, many courts will be hesitant to alter a 16 or 17-year-old’s decision unless the child has significant difficulties or the decision appears illogical.
Preference is not accorded the same weight with a younger child since small children are not capable of understanding their own best interests. Still, a child’s preference is considered, as it may reflect which parent has formed a stronger bond with the teenager.
After a Divorce, Who Gets Custody of the Child?
If you and your spouse cannot agree on a custody arrangement for your child, it can be decided in Family Court or as part of a divorce proceeding. The court will make its custody judgment based on the criteria of what is in the child’s best interests, which has no hard and fast rules or guidelines. In most cases, there will be some form of shared custody.
What are the Different Types of Custody?
Custody is divided into two categories: legal custody and physical custody.
In joint legal custody, all significant decisions regarding the child must be discussed and agreed upon by the parents. School, religion, medical care, and extracurricular activities are examples of this. On these issues, sole legal grants one parent sole decision-making authority.
Shared physical custody, also known as joint physical custody, implies that the child’s custody is split 50/50 or reasonably evenly between the parents. When one spouse has more than 50 percent of the custodial time with the child, that parent is considered to have primary physical custody, which grants that parent significant decision-making rights in the absence of agreement.
Sole physical custody means that one parent has physical custody of the child, and the other parent has minimal time with the child or no contact with the child.
Is Child Support Paid If Both Parents Share Custody?
Yes. According to the Child Support Standards Act of New York, a child’s support is to be provided by the non-custodial parent to the custodial parent based on the state’s formula, which is a percentage of your gross income after deducting your FICA withholdings (which is 7.65 percent of your income). The non-custodial parent is the one who spends less than half of the time with the child physically.
Moreover, if the parents have an absolute 50/50 share of physical custody and there is no method to establish who has just over 50%, the person with the higher income is presumed to be the non-custodial parent and must pay child support to the other parent. However, parents can agree to forgo child support payments to each other on a contractual basis.
If Child Support is Not Paid, Can a Parent Refuse to Grant Visitation?
No. Visitation and child support are two separate matters, and the courts dislike hearing that visitation is being restricted because child support has not been paid, mainly if a custody order establishing visitation schedules already exists.
Do Grandparents Have Visitation and Custody Rights?
Grandparents do not have automatic rights to custody and visitation. However, they can file for a petition for custody or visitation. But it is highly uncommon for a grandparent to gain custody of a child. Furthermore, obtaining a court-ordered visitation plan for a grandparent is not simple. It is possible, but it will not be simple.
Is it Necessary to Have a Parenting Plan?
In New York, there is no such thing as a parenting plan or anything comparable to it. When determining custody in New York, the courts must apply the criteria of what is in the child’s best interest.
Do Judges Have the Authority to Order Supervised Visitations or No Visitations?
If there are reasonable grounds to believe that a child being alone with the parent may endanger the child, the court might order supervised or no visitation for that parent. Although it is uncommon for a court to order no visitation at all, supervised visitation is definitely an option in the right circumstances.
Do Courts Favor Mothers Over Fathers?
Courts aren’t allowed to give one parent an advantage over the other. However, judges are human beings, and certain judges may exhibit gender biases in favor of one gender over the other.
What Should You Know about a Custody Case Before Going to Court?
Before a custody trial begins, you should have a good idea of what the opposing party will say in support of their custody request or against your request for custody. Also, you should know precisely how to behave during a hearing so that the judge does not have a negative impression of you, which could influence the court’s judgment.
Can You Gather Your Evidence to Use if Your Custody Case Goes to Court?
Definitely, but you will want to work closely with your attorney on this since evidence must be gathered in the appropriate manner and form, or else it will not be utilized in court.
Is it Likely That Your Child May Have to Appear in Court?
It’s unlikely. The court can interview your child in private to hear his or her desires, although this is not always done. It is usually done if a parent or your child’s attorney requests it.
What is the Purpose of the Parental Kidnapping Prevention Act?
This is an Act passed by Congress in 1980. The Act connects with the Uniform Child Custody Jurisdiction and Enforcement Act and the Uniform Child Custody Jurisdiction Act.
The UCCJEA and UCCJA were designed to ensure that child custody orders were similar across the 50 states so that a parent could not simply take the child to another state and obtain a custody order to the disadvantage of the other parent where one state had already given one.
The concept is that the custody order from the first state will have full validity in all other states, and the Parent Kidnapping Prevention Act will assist in returning the child to the other parent if the first parent refuses to surrender the child.