Nassau County Child Visitation Lawyer

Probably the hardest part of a divorce is working out details of child custody including a visitation schedule. After your Nassau County child visitation lawyer presents your case, a judge will issue orders concerning both legal and physical custody:

  • Legal custody is the authority to make importance decisions in the child’s life such as school choices and medical decisions.
  • Physical custody determines where the child lives. When a parent has physical custody, a child stays with that parent over half the time. A court may award joint physical custody to both parents or award physical custody to just one parent.

If one parent is awarded physical custody, then the other parent will be given child visitation privileges. The court will want to ensure that both parents have enough time with the child to maintain a good relationship. This means playing an active part in the child’s life on a day to day basis and being present for important milestones and events. However, the primary party to be considered is the child. It’s important for children to have a good relationship with their parents, but at the same time, it’s important for children to feel that they have a stable home and community life. You don’t want them to feel like that are always bouncing back and forth between the parents’ homes. A good Nassau County child visitation lawyer can discuss visitation options with you as well as any other issues that relate to child custody or child support.

Seeking Child Visitation in the State of New York

The Nassau County court will issue a child visitation schedule when it issues the custody order. The schedule is normally specific and lays out the days and times of visitation. Even though the court wants to see the child have enough time with both parents to develop and maintain a bond, it will not award visitation privileges if one of the parties’ attorneys can show that visiting with the noncustodial parent would somehow harm the child. For example, if the noncustodial parent has been abusive or neglectful toward the child in the past, it’s very possible that a court will not award them visitation.

Relatives such as grandparents, siblings and step-siblings can petition the court for visitation also, but the court will want to see a pre-existing and substantial relationship between the child and the family member. The courts consider the continuation of these strong relationships to be in the best interests of the child. Often, when family members seek visitation rights, it is because the custodial parent does not want them to see the child. If this is the case, there is a legal presumption that the custodial parent’s decision is in best interests of the child. However, the relative seeking visitation may be able to rebut the presumption that visitation should not be granted.

Nassau County Child Visitation Lawyer

In some situations, the custodial parent may try to prevent the noncustodial parent from exercising their court-ordered visiting privileges. If the parties cannot work out their differences, the attorney of the noncustodial parent has little choice but to file a “Petition for Enforcement of a Visitation Order” in the Nassau County court. It is important if you are being barred from seeing your child that you document the dates, times and situation when your ex-spouse interfered. At the hearing on the matter, the judge will want to see the specifics. If you are facing this problem, don’t wait. Consult with a good Nassau County attorney with child visitation experience. Your attorney can help you document the incidents and convince the court that the custodial parent is stopping you or otherwise interfering with your rights to see your child. The court can fine the custodial parent, impose other sanctions or even change the visitation order so it is more advantageous to you.

When a noncustodial parent interferes with the child visitation rights of a custodial parent, it is common for the custodial parent to want to react by ceasing child support. This is not permitted. You can petition the court to change the child support order, but if you just stop paying, you can be found in contempt of court. Not only will you be ordered to pay, but you could face jail time. Neither can a custodial parent stop a noncustodial parent from visiting their child because the custodial parent has not paid child support. Instead, the custodial parent should file a “Petition for Violation of a Support Order.”

Contact the Law Offices of Stephen Bilkis & Associates

Divorce is difficult and dealing with child custody and child visitation can be the hardest parts. If you are concerned with child custody and visitation matters, or if you are having difficulty seeing your child despite a current court order, it is important that you are represented by a Nassau County family law attorney with experience. The staff at the Law Offices of Stephen Bilkis & Associates has years of experience successfully representing clients who have custody issues and who have other family law matters. Contact us at 1-800-NY-NY-LAW (1-800-696-9529) to schedule a free, no obligation consultation regarding your case. We represent clients in the following locations: the Bronx, Brooklyn, Long Island, Manhattan, Nassau County, Queens, Staten Island, Suffolk County and Westchester County.

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