One of the most disputed matters in any divorce is custody. When the parents split, who gets the children? The process of winning child custody is not a simple one, which means that you need a knowledgeable Staten Island divorce lawyer by your side. The Law Offices of Adelola Sheralynn Dow can provide the counsel and representation that you need in order to protect your rights to custody and visitation.
Deciding Child Custody – The Best Interests of the Child
There is no cookie-cutter way of deciding custody. Each divorce and child custody case is different and has different factors that play into the final decision. In uncontested cases, the child's parents come to their own agreement regarding which parent the child lives with and when. When the matter is disputed, the case is taken to court and a family law judge makes the decision.
New York has very sparse laws regarding how child custody is determined. New York Domestic Relations Law § 70 states the following:
"…In all cases there shall be no prima facie right to the custody of the child in either parent, but the court shall determine solely what is for the best interest of the child, and what will best promote its welfare and happiness, and make award accordingly."
The judge will make his or her decision based on what they believe is for the best interest of the child. This means that you as the parent need to prove to the judge that your child's best interest involves your having custody.
Other Factors that Play Into Child Custody Decisions
Other factors that a judge may consider when deciding custody include:
- Each parent's ability to support their child physically, emotionally, and financially
- Each parent's desire to care for their child
- The child's relationship with each parent
- Any special physical or emotional needs that the child has
Consult a Staten Island family law attorney from the Law Offices of Adelola Sheralynn Dow right away to learn more about child custody decisions. Attorney Dow can also provide you with aggressive and effective representation in court, striving to provide you with the best possible chance of obtaining custody of your child.
Call now at (800) 560-0922 to contact a lawyer who can protect your rights!