Child Custody

What You Need to Know About Child Custody in New York

Getting divorced with children in New York can be a challenging experience.  Whenever there are children involved, it can complicate divorce matters because of issues that have to be resolved such as child custody.  It is important to be knowledgeable about New York laws regarding child custody.  The best way to know what your responsibilities are and how to best handle going about custody is to consult a NY divorce lawyer.  In the meantime, let’s discuss what you need to know about child custody in New York City.

Child Custody in New York

What Are the Different Types of Child Custody in New York


The two different types of child custody in New York are legal custody and physical custody. Legal custody pertains to how decisions regarding the child’s life are made. Legal custody includes making decisions about the children’s education, religion, health care choices, and more.


The other type of custody pertains to physical custody.  Physical custody means where the child will live in a day-to-day basis. 


In a New York child custody battle, the court may determine if only one parent gets custody of the child or if the court will award joint custody. It is important to note that even if both parents have joint custody in NYC, the court can still assign one parent as having primary custody of the child.  The primary custody would determine the child’s primary residence.


How Does the New York Court Decide Who Gets Primary Custody in NY?


The court’s job and the judge’s responsibility is to ensure that the child’s best interests come first; above anything else. The court will evaluate many factors related to how the parents interact with each other and treat their child. They will want to know what the child’s relationship is with each parent as well as both parent's work schedules and childcare plans. Furthermore, they will want to know which parent can provide the most stable home environment that meets the needs of the child. The court will also look for any history of domestic violence and factor that into the decision-making process. If the child is old enough to communicate their wishes, that will also play a role in determining the outcome of custody in New York.


How to Prepare for a Child Custody Hearing in New York City


Keep Accurate Documentation: document things such as when you spend time with your child, and any important conversations you have had with your ex-spouse. Document any situations that occurred that could potentially be a red flag.


Understand What is Best for Your Child: be prepared to convey how you can best meet the emotional, educational, and health needs of your child. For example, if your child is highly involved in school activities and relocating may disrupt their schooling, that must be considered if it is best for the child or not.


Try to Compromise:  the more you are willing to compromise with your soon-to-be ex-spouse, the easier it will be to come to an amicable resolution. This will not only be a less stressful solution but will also keep your divorce expenses down. You might want to consider divorce mediation to help resolve some of the difficult situations that you are having trouble agreeing upon.


Need Help With Child Custody Matters in Manhattan?


Call Sabra Law Group today at (646) 472-7971 if you need assistance with child custody or divorce matters.  Sabra Law Group can help you mediate your divorce so you can come to a resolution sooner and take some of the pressure off when it comes to communicating with a difficult spouse.



How to Build a Favorable Case to Get Custody of Kids in New York

Custody of Kids in New YorkGoing through a divorce when there are children involved can be a stressful situation. Your children are your most valuable asset when it comes to divorce and New York courts also recognize that because they will always put the best interest of the children first. If you want to get custody of your kids in New York; the more prepared you are, the better the likelihood for things to go in your favor. Below are some important things to consider.


Familiarize Yourself with New York City’s Child Custody Laws


In New York, there is physical (residential) custody and legal (decision-making) custody. The court can award joint or sole custody based on what it believes serves the best interest of the child.


Document Your Involvement in Your Children’s Lives


One of the ways to build a strong case for custody in NY is to keep a record of how involved you are in the children’s day-to-day activities. Examples include preparing their meals, attending school events, scheduling and attending medical appointments, and extracurricular activities. Showing that you are vested in your children’s day-to-day is essential.


Be Able to Demonstrate That You Have Created a Safe and Stable Environment for Your Children


Make sure that the home environment is safe and makes your children feel safe and secure.


If this means downgrading to move to a safer neighborhood with better schools, it might be something to consider because the court would want the children to be living in the safest environment.


Do Your Best to Maintain a Positive Relationship with the Other Parent


Even though it may be difficult to do, it is imperative to not badmouth your soon-to-be ex-spouse to (or within earshot of) your children.  Furthermore, if you can remain on good terms where you can communicate effectively with each other, it will make it easier to sort through divorce matters.


Be Able to Demonstrate That You Have a Steady Stream of Income Coming In


It is important to have a steady job and be able to responsibly manage your bills and finances. Demonstrate financial stability and the ability to support your children.


Put Your Best Foot Forward


Even though it is easy to turn to excessive alcohol to ease your pain, keep in mind that would not reflect positively with the court.  Also, do not engage in drugs or any other behavior that would reflect badly on you.


Build a Strong Case for Yourself By Getting Testimony from Family and Friends


If you can ask friends and family to put into writing how they view you as a parent and say some positive words about how they view your interactions with your children, it may help you with custody.


Don’t Forget to Consider Your Children’s Wishes


If your children are old enough to understand that their parents are in the middle of a divorce; respect their opinion and ask them what their ideal situation would be.  Remember that just because you are done with your spouse doesn’t mean that they have to be. Even if your children can’t have things exactly how they want them; it still makes them feel heard and respected when you take the time to listen to their needs.


Consider Divorce Mediation in New York    


Divorce mediation may be a suitable option for working out child custody issues and matters in an amicable way.  Call Sabra Law Group at (646) 472-7971.





New York Divorce Mediator Shares How to Protect Your Children During Divorce

Divorce can have a negative impact on children and their well-being; however, there are ways you can protect your children during divorce. A New York divorce mediator shares some things you can do to protect your children during divorce.


Opt for a Low-Conflict Divorce


If you do not want divorce to negatively impact your children, it is important to keep the conflict level low in your divorce. One way to do this is to mediate your divorce instead of battling it out in court. Although some conflict is unavoidable during divorce, you can take steps to safeguard your children so that they are not stuck in the middle of a nasty divorce battle.

New York Divorce Mediator: How to Protect Your Children During Divorce

Be Cautious of Your Spouse Putting Your Children in the Middle of the Divorce


If your spouse is going to your teenage children to communicate with you; instead of communicating with you directly, they are putting your children in the middle of your divorce. It is imperative to nip that in the bud as soon as it happens. Have an honest and upfront discussion with your spouse that this is not healthy for the children. Also, convey that as adults we should handle the details of the divorce confidentially.


Are Your Children Too Young to Understand Why You Are Divorcing?


Also, it is best to not be an open book when it comes to disclosing reasons for your divorce to your children. If your husband cheated on you, it is not something you want to bring up to your children; especially if they are too young to comprehend what is happening.


Keep Financial Matters About Child Support Confidential from Your Children


And if your ex is giving you a hard time about paying for child support or providing other financial support for the children, do not bring the children into it! It is best to keep these things private and sharing things like this with your children can foster resentment towards the other parent. Talking bad about the other parent can take a psychological toll on children; so, it is best to avoid this at all costs.


Have a Solid Game Plan on How to Treat Your Children Collectively During the Divorce


“Collectively” means that both of you need to be on the same page in terms of what you're going to share with the children and what you're not going to share with the children. Think of it as making a pact that is not meant to be broken for the sake of your children’s emotional well-being.


Need a New York Divorce Mediator to Help You With Your Divorce?


Call Sabra Law Group today at 646-472-7971 to speak to a knowledgeable New York divorce mediator who can assist you with your divorce matters.




5 Common Misconceptions About a Child Custody Battle in New York City

There are so many misconceptions that go around about child custody battles in New York City. However, let's spend a moment to separate the facts from fiction. Let's explore some of the most common misconceptions about child custody battles in New York City.


Misconception #1: Mothers Will Always Get Custody of Their Children.

What's really the reality in 2023? The court will always focus on the best interest of the children regardless of if it decides to award custody to the mother or father. There are so many factors that go into who gets awarded custody, however; the child's stability and well-being will always play an important role. Furthermore, the court will consider how involved each parent can be based on their job responsibilities and lifestyle.

Child Custody Battle New York


Misconception #2: If a Parent Doesn't Pay Child Support, They May Lose Their Visitation Rights


The reality is that child support and visitation rights are not always related. Usually, parents cannot be denied visitation if they fail to make child support payments. It is however important to note that the parent who is receiving child support has a right to pursue legal action in order to collect child support payments. It is also realistic to consider that the parent is supposed to be receiving child support payments and doesn’t may try to deny visitation to the parent that is withholding child support. It is best to consult a NY divorce and custody lawyer if you are in this situation.


Misconception #3: The Court Will Favor the Parent with More Financial Stability


The truth is that even though financial stability is important for taking care of the children; the court cannot decide based on that alone. Many factors must go into the decision-making process, such as is there a stable home environment and what will be best for the child's emotional health.


Misconception #4: Once a Child Custody Order is Finalized, it Cannot Be Changed

The reality is that a parent or child’s circumstances can change over time. When circumstances do change, the court has the authority to revisit and remodify the child custody order upon application by either parent. One example of this would be if one of the parents gets a job out of state and has to move out of town. Another example would be if the court thinks that a child's well-being is at risk. In each instance, one of the parents would need to make an application to the court for a modification to the existing custody arrangements.


Misconception #5: Parents Can Finalize Custody Arrangements Without Getting a Court Involved


The reality is that parents can come up with custody arrangements outside of court, however; it is sensible to consult a knowledgeable New York divorce and custody attorney who can help formalize the agreement. Call Sabra Law Group if you need assistance at (646) 472-7971.


Misconception #6 Child Custody Battles in Court Always End Up in a Long and Nasty Legal Process


The reality is that many custody battles and disputes can be resolved through mediation or even a collaborative divorce process. The advantage of either of these processes is that they focus on helping both parents to come up with a mutually agreeable solution and do it in a quicker and less confrontational manner than going to court. Preparing for a Child Custody Battle in New York City? Contact Sabra Law Group to get the support you need in your child custody battle in New York at (646) 472-7971.




How to Prepare for Your Child Custody Battle in New York

Custody Battle in New York

One of the most significant issues divorcing couples cannot agree upon is child custody. Both parents usually want the best for their children, however, many divorcing couples find that they have different ideas about what is best for the child, visitation schedules, and child support amounts. 

Couples going through a bitter divorce may even use child custody and support issues to drag out the divorce proceedings. Emotions run very high in a divorce, and anger can make people think differently than at any other time. Consider using a divorce mediator if you need to prepare for a child custody battle in New York.

Divorce mediation is often the best choice for divorce proceedings that are stuck on a subject or have difficulty proceeding to the next step. Both parties come to a standstill, and the case drags on and causes delays in the divorce moving forward and causes both parties to become frustrated.


Since both attorneys are vested in their client's best interest, bringing in a divorce mediator is the perfect option. A divorce mediator has no connection to either party. They offer an outside opinion on a subject that is highly emotional for all others involved.

Divorce Mediators Bring Calm to the Table

Since the divorce mediator does not have any vested interest in either party, they can look at the information and make valid suggestions to settle the child custody issues. The mediator can look at what is really in the child's best interest and offer advice on how both parents can make this work.

A mediator can present facts to both sides of the issue that is unbiased. In most cases, both parties will respond very well to this type of information. When either party believes that the decision is not harming them, they will start making the choices necessary to get the divorce proceedings moving and bring an end to the case.

Facing A Child Custody Battle In New York?

If you are facing a child custody battle in New York, it will be in your best interest to contact Sabra Law Group at 646.472.7971. They are certified divorce mediators and have been successfully helping people settle their differences and come up with viable solutions so that they can finalize their divorce.











How to Protect Your Children from Parental Conflict During Divorce


Divorcing couples may not agree on much but one thing that they can probably agree on is that they both want what is best for their children. Divorce is a very difficult and stressful time and children will feel the toll of divorce as well. The good news is there are some ways that you can protect your children from parental conflict during divorce.


If your children are old enough to understand what divorce really means, make sure that you are not getting into details with them about your frustrations with your ex. Even if you have teenage children and they ask you why you are angry with your ex; it is best not to vent to your children.


Just as you would not want your spouse to badmouth you to your children; it is best to have the same respect for your spouse as well.  Children are very sensitive to their environment, and it is best to create a safe and healthy environment for them. 


It is Best to Avoid Parental Alienation


Parental alienation happens when one parent influences a child into disengaging with the other parent, usually by speaking negatively about the other parent. The parent who is speaking negatively about the other parent may also refuse to coordinate time sharing and be uncooperative in the co-parenting process.


That is going to be extremely difficult on children because children want to be loved by both parents, they want to be accepted by both parents and they want to be loyal to both parents.


Parental alienation can also result in serious psychological and emotional issues that may impact your child custody case.


If you're struggling with divorce and need someone to talk to, reach out to a trusted friend or consider seeking the help of a qualified therapist or counselor.


Do Not Deny Parenting Time to Your Ex


No matter how old your children are children need both of their parents to be involved in their lives.  It would not be fair to keep your children from the other parent.  If you are trying to punish your ex by keeping them from their children, it also punishes your children.  Children do not deserve to be placed in the middle of a parental battle. 


Learn How to Effectively Communicate with Your Ex


Part of the co-parenting process is to be flexible. The more flexible you are, the easier it will be to get along with your ex and ensure that your children are not impacted negatively by the divorce process. The are parenting courses available online where you can learn ways to effectively co-parent and there are co-parenting apps that both you and your ex can use to communicate about the children and share documents, events, and calendar all in one place.  So look for resources and ways in which co-parenting can be made easier for you.


Speak to a Manhattan Divorce Mediator to Help with Parental Conflict


You do not have to figure it all out alone.  Reach out to Sabra Law Group today to schedule a confidential consultation at (646) 472-7971. 









How to Get Full Custody of Your Children in New York

One of the most contentious matters in divorce cases is child custody. The parents want what's best for their children, and that's also the goal of the courts. In fact, judges are guided by the principle of the "best interests of the children”.

In general, it's considered desirable for the children to maintain relationships with both parents. Nonetheless, there may be situations in which it's wise for one parent to be awarded full custody.

If you believe that having full custody of your children in New York is in your family's best interest, then there are things you can do to strengthen your case.

Collect Documentation

Do you believe that your spouse is abusive? If so, then it's sensible to gather as much evidence as possible. This may include medical records, affidavits from healthcare professionals, photographs, and your written observations.

Even if abuse isn't occurring, it's smart to keep a journal of everything that happens with regard to your kids. Record events like pick-ups and drop-offs, phone calls, whether or not child support payments are being received, and your child's routine activities. Courts love to have everything documented, so the more notes you take, the better.

Keep Yourself Clean

Any questionable behavior on your part can make it harder for you to obtain full custody of children in New York. Keep your driving record spotless. A DWI or reckless driving citation will come out in court. If any court orders are in place, make certain that you follow them to the letter, even if you don't agree with them. Make sure that you aren't indulging in recreational drug use or drinking to excess. If you're on social media, suspend your participation, but keep an eye on what your spouse is posting.

Spend Time with and Know Your Children

Make certain that you're familiar with your child's teachers and doctors, and spend quality time with your kid. Keep childcare by others to a minimum as your children need to have your hands-on involvement. While it's important to communicate with your child, refrain from discussing the custody case or trying to obtain information about the other parent from them.

Perhaps the best thing you can do toward obtaining full custody of your children in New York is to hire the Sabra Law Group to represent you. Call (646) 472-7971 today to learn how we can help you with custody in New York.







What Happens to My Rights of Access if I Have a Child with a Partner and We Are Unmarried?

In recent years, it has become increasingly common for unmarried couples to have children. This has presented a relatively new set of challenges when these couples decide to separate.

The good news is that unmarried parents have many of the same rights that married ones do in New York. For instance, it is possible under state law for unmarried parents to claim visitation, custody, and child support.

What Are Some Issues that Can Arise in Cases Where Partners Are Unmarried?

Nonetheless, other issues may arise in such cases that do not usually attend typical divorce cases. As an example, questions of paternity are more likely to arise in these cases than they are in more traditional divorce matters.

Another issue that is more likely to arise is rights of access. Simply because the relationship between the adults is ending, the responsibilities of parenthood do not cease. As the couple separates, it is necessary to create a sensible and realistic plan for continuing to raise the children, ideally with both parents in the picture.

A big part of this plan is custody. "Custody" refers to legal responsibility for caring for a child. Residency or physical custody relates to where the child lives while legal custody relates more to the power to make decisions with regard to factors like health care and education.

How Are Decisions Regarding Physical Custody Handled in New York?

The parents or the court may make decisions with regard to the child's "physical custody," or primary residence, with one of the parents. Consequently, the other parent likely will be granted "visitation" rights, also referred to as “parenting time.” These are effectively rights of access that ensure that a child and parent are able to spend adequate time together to foster a meaningful relationship.

Either of the parents may be granted physical custody, and the other parent is virtually always granted rights of access. Remember that the standard applied by the courts is in “the best interest of the child.” Typically, this means having quality access to both parents. Even if you and your partner were never married, this should not be an obstacle to you or your former partner receiving rights of access.

Who Determines Visitation?

The court determines whether or not visitation is in the child's best interest, but, if possible, it's wise to try to settle such matters out of court. Mediation is a sensible and less confrontational option that can settle questions of custody and rights of access.

Need Assistance with Your Rights of Access in New York?

If you would like to learn more about rights of access, contact the Sabra Law Group today by calling (646) 472-7971.













Do I Have Rights to Be Present During the Birth of My Child if the Mother Keeps Me Away?

Do I Have Rights to Be Present During the Birth of My Child if the Mother Keeps Me Away?

You have conceived a child with a woman that you are not married to at this time. Whether this pregnancy was planned or not, you want to have an active part in the process. However, the mother does not want you to be involved in the pregnancy or birth process.

Your question is, “Do I have rights to be present at the birth of my child”?

The Answer is No, You Do Not Have Rights to Be Present

Under the guidelines of the law, pregnancy is seen as a medical condition, and the woman who is giving birth has the right to privacy for the medical care for this condition. You cannot force or compel her to allow you to be present at the birth of your child.

However, once the baby is born, you do have parental rights. These rights give you the ability to bring a proceeding in court for visitation and other parental duties for the child. When you start a proceeding to enforce your rights, you will also have to establish paternity as well as a child support plan for that child.

Speak with An Experienced Attorney Focused on This Area of Law

Establishing parental rights under these circumstances can be challenging when one parent does not want to interact with the other. Parental rights will have to be established through paternity testing, and there will need to be legal documentation presented.

If you have found yourself in a position where you want to establish your paternity so that you can have an active part in your child's life, work with an attorney who focuses on family law.

Sabra Law Group Can Assist with Establishing Your Rights as the Child’s Father

The New York family law attorneys at Sabra Law Group can help you with this situation. They can help establish your rights and seek visitation rights for you with your child. Through mediation or direct legal action with the courts, Sabra Law Group will actively represent your rights as the child's father.

You may not have the legal right to be present at the birth of your child, but this does not mean you do not have the rights to be involved in their life. If you want to be actively involved in your child's life, speak with one of the attorneys at Sabra Law Group today. Call 646-742-7971 and find out everything Sabra Law Group can do for you.














What You Need to Know About Child Custody if You Relocate Outside of New York 

relocate outside of New York

Issues concerning child custody are limited by jurisdiction. For a court to make any determination on child custody issues, it must be established that the child has lived within the jurisdiction for the previous six months. This is usually not an issue, but if you relocate outside of New York prior to establishing custody, there may be some additional legal issues you must address.

Rules For Custody Jurisdiction

In most cases, if there were prior child custody hearings about the child or children in question held in New York and the children have since moved, New York may elect to keep jurisdiction over the custody hearings if one of the parents has remained in New York. However, if the child has lived outside of the area for over six months, the court in the new state may assume jurisdiction over custody hearings. This applies to every state except Massachusetts.

What Happens if Your Child Has Large Connections to New York State

If you relocate outside of New York, but the child has a large connection to the state, such as education, medical care, or spends a significant time with the other parent who lives in New York, the state may retain jurisdiction over all custody hearings.

There Are Many Complexities When It Comes to Child Custody 

There are many complexities that can arise when it comes to child custody. If the child was wrongly removed from the state, New York may automatically assume jurisdiction as the home state for the child. 

If there were other circumstances that have removed the child from living in the state for the prior six months, but they really should be considered a resident of New York, the state may decide to retain authority.

Work With A Child Custody Attorney

If there are any questions about residency when it comes to child custody, it will be in the best interest of the parent to seek representation from a child custody attorney. An attorney can help establish jurisdiction as well as help solve all of the issues regarding custody.

It will be especially important to seek legal representation if you have recently relocated outside of New York and need to make any changes to your child custody agreement. 

Contact Sabra Law Group today to discuss your child custody case at (646) 472-7971.