Family Law

Saturday, September 24, 2016

New Study Finds Most Divorces Happen After the Holidays

When do most divorces occur?

A recent study suggests that certain times of the year are harder on a marriage.  Researchers from the University of Washington evaluated divorce petitions filed in Washington state between the years 2001 and 2015.

Read more . . .

Saturday, September 24, 2016

New York State Court of Appeals Rules to Expand the Definition of Parenthood

Who can seek custody of a child in New York?

New York’s highest court, the Court of Appeals, recently issued a monumental ruling that expands the definition of parenthood.  Under the new law, caretakers that are not related either biologically or through adoption to a child will still have standing to seek custody and visitation rights.  The ruling will have a significant impact for parents, especially same-sex couples, and brings New York into line with mainstream beliefs in the United States that parents need not be related to their children by blood, adoption, or marriage.

The case that brought about this important law change involved a same-sex couple that announced their engagement in 2007, though same-sex marriage was not permitted at the time in New York.  One of the partners later became pregnant with their child through artificial insemination.

Read more . . .

Sunday, July 10, 2016

Depp/ Heard Divorce Involves Claims of Domestic Violence

How will Heard’s claims of domestic violence affect her divorce from Depp?

People get divorced for a variety of reasons. These include incompatibility, adultery and abandonment. But, sometimes things take a more dangerous turn and domestic violence is involved. When domestic violence becomes an issue it can have a major affect on the way the divorce turns out. A recent example of this is that of major movie star Johnny Depp and his current wife, Amber Heard.

Read more . . .

Tuesday, June 7, 2016

Cohabiting After Divorce - A Growing Trend

Is "birdnesting" -- sharing a home after divorce -- a practical solution or terrible idea?

Celebrities do it. Regular folks do it too. More and more divorced couples from all walks of life are "birdnesting," an arrangement in which a husband and wife share and rotate in and out of the same home even after their marriage has dissolved.

Birdnesting as a Solution to Financial Pressures

Financial exigencies sometimes play a role in the decision to birdnest. When a house is heavily mortgaged or when a spouse is having career difficulties, sharing it can prevent financial losses or foreclosure and the disruptive impact these events would have on children.

Read more . . .

Tuesday, June 7, 2016

Fighting for Custody of Fido

When a couple divorces, who gets to keep the family pet?

Fido the dog and Chloe the cat are not just pets. They are members of your family. So, did you ever think about what would happen to them should you and your spouse decide to divorce?  Probably not. Well, with two-thirds of American households containing a pet and many of these households made up of couples who are waiting longer to have children, the issue of pet custody has become a hot one in divorce cases. 

When it comes to pet custody, there are a few things you should know.

Read more . . .

Sunday, May 1, 2016

Minors Getting Married

Should those under the age of 18 be allowed to marry?

These days it might seem as if all our teens are worried about is the latest fashion trend or what is going around on social media. So, you would probably be surprised to find out that tens of thousands of minors enter into marriages every year in the United States, many of them at ages 14 and 15. Is this good for our teenagers? What kinds of adverse effects does underage marriage have on young people?  Should they be allowed to marry?

While underage marriage is more popular in developing countries, it occurs in the U.

Read more . . .

Monday, April 25, 2016

Parents Can Now Legally Eavesdrop on Children's Conversations

What are the implications for divorce and custody agreements when a child's conversations with others can be recorded?

In a new watershed decision, New York's highest court has ruled that parents may sometimes eavesdrop on their children's conversations without obtaining consent.

Typically, in New York, the consent of at least one party is required to record or wiretap a conversation. But a parent or guardian who believes it is in the minor child's best interest can make an audio or video recording of a conversation without the consent of either the child or the other party

Parents Must Be Acting in Good Faith

A recording is not legal if the parent does not genuinely believe that it is necessary, and the belief must be "objectively" reasonable to others. It is not sufficient for the parent simply to decide to do it without justification. For example, if a child were possibly being physically harmed or emotionally or sexually abused, a reasonable person might conclude that a recording would help as a step toward seeking protection for the child.
Read more . . .

Thursday, March 31, 2016

What You Should Know About Grandparent Visitation Post-Divorce

Historically, New York and federal laws have held preeminent the rights of a father and mother to direct the upbringing of their children. In the words of the 1936 New York Supreme Court, “the vast majority of matters concerning the upbringing of children must be left to the conscience, patience, and self-restraint of father and mother. No end of difficulties would arise should judges try to tell parents how to bring up their children.” (People ex. rel.
Read more . . .

Monday, March 28, 2016

Manhattan Attorney Fined $10, 000 for Exhibiting Bad Behavior in Court Has Now Lost Custody of His 2-Year-Old Son

How is it possible to lose custody of your child during a hearing to determine child custody?

The assumption that "fair" child custody arrangements include similar access by each parent to the child or children in question is often erroneous. In a case last year, a Manhattan attorney, who had previously been fined $10,000 for his bad behavior during a divorce and child custody proceeding, ended up forfeiting all rights to raise his young son.
Read more . . .

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