Experienced New York Child Custody Lawyer – Child Custody, Visitation, and Family Law in Divorce

When it comes to a divorce in New York, one of the most contentious matters between the divorcing couple is the custody of their child. Both parties will invariably want to spend as much time as possible with their child, but often, these desires are counter to each other, and meeting each parent’s needs can be challenging.

While each parent does have a critical say in a New York child custody matter, especially when they can come together cooperatively to work together toward custodial terms, what the court will always consider, first and foremost, is the child’s best interests. This is why it is critical to have the finest New York attorney possible when the guardianship of your children is at stake.

At The Law Office of Ryan Besinque, P.C., our team of New York child custody attorneys and staff have years of experience assisting parents in coming to agreements that are most suited to their needs and the needs of their children. If no cooperation is possible and a judge must decide the matter, it is even more critical to have the right divorce lawyer to make your case. We strongly advocate for every parent and their legal rights to custody under the law and leave no stone unturned in representing and protecting our client’s parental rights. For help with your case, call top-rated New York lawyer Ryan Besinque at (929) 251-4477.

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How is Child Custody and Visitation Determined in a Divorce in New York?

While historically, NYC divorce courts used to consider the mother the most obvious choice in child custody matters, today, that is no longer the case. In ideal circumstances, both parents will come to an agreement that suits them and the welfare of their children. 

As in all divorce matters, when you and your spouse can come to a mutual agreement about the guardianship of your children, it is to your advantage. Even if you hit some roadblocks, you may work through your conflicts with skilled negotiation or mediation and come to terms that everyone can agree to. These terms will be detailed in a legal contract called a child custody agreement and both parents will be bound by them.

Unfortunately, if you cannot reach an agreement between the two of you, child custody will be decided by the courts. Although most judges try to resolve child custody fairly and equitably, the court weighs their decisions heavily based on what benefits the child the most. The primary goal is to keep the child’s life as consistent and undisrupted as possible. Getting the assistance of a skilled child custody lawyer in New York may help guide you toward a mutual agreement before it becomes a matter of the court.

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What Considerations Factor Into the Best Interests of the Children in Child Custody Cases?

In New York family law, the best interest of the child is a legal standard that the courts use when making any custodial determinations. 

Regardless of whether the couple makes a decision on their own or requires the court’s intervention, a judge will never approve a final child custody agreement unless he or she believes that the child’s best interests have been served. Each family is unique, and the courts will look at each of their situations individually when making decisions about child custody and what would be most advantageous for the child.

Specifically, they will consider things like:

Who is the current primary caretaker

What the parenting skills are of each partner

Where the child currently resides and how long they have lived there

What the child’s current quality of home life is like

What kind of home life will each parent offer

If there has been any history of domestic abuse

What is the emotional, financial, and physical status of each parent

Which parent is better able to provide consistent food, education, and medical attention for the child

If there has been any history of substance abuse

What each parent’s work schedule is like

If there are siblings and if they will be together

Each parent’s willingness to work with the other

If the child is old enough, if they have a preference of living with one parent

The child’s relationship with the siblings and with any other family members

The New York family court will make their determinations based on the child’s current care status and who currently acts as the primary caretaker in their life. In most cases, the court will strive to keep the child’s future living circumstances as consistent as possible with what they are used to.

But there may be situations where it is not in the child’s best interest to keep that current living situation. At times like these, it is vitally important to have New York attorneys ensure that all critical information comes to light in a New York child custody case. Call the Law Office of Ryan Besinque to speak with a top-rated family law attorney about your child custody case, we are here to help (929) 251-4477.

Our Clients Testimonials
Reanna Hodkiewicz
Reanna Hodkiewicz
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I was looking for a lawyer to handle my child support case and didn’t know where I should go. I searched the internet and found Ryan Besinque. I checked his reviews and it seemed like he was a truly wonderful person and an excellent attorney. After comparing him to other lawyers, I decided to pick Ryan to represent me in court. I have been really pleased with my choice. Everyone on his team is experienced and well-informed. If you leave a voice message or send an email, someone gets back to you almost right away. I am completely satisfied with my child support and I highly recommend Ryan Besinque to anyone needing help with their child support case.
Kurtis Collier
Kurtis Collier
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Hiring Ryan Besinque is the best decision I have ever made. He made everything so simple and easy. Even though my case was complicated, he was very clear and concise. His professionalism is top notch! I would highly recommend him to anyone needing a child custody lawyer.
Nikki Lueilwitz
Nikki Lueilwitz
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I hired Ryan Besinque for my divorce mediation not too long ago. Ryan was patient and very knowledgeable with all of my questions. He took the time to make sure I understood my situation. It was a relief to have him handle my case. Ryan and his team were extremely professional and understood and worked with me throughout the process. They responded quickly to my emails and calls, which was proof that they value me as a client. They were very helpful and efficient in resolving my problem. Thanks a lot guys!
Kirstin Crist
Kirstin Crist
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Ryan provided exceptional service and exceeded all my expectations. He was helpful and responsive. I was able to get my child custody case settled in no time thanks to him. Without him, I wouldn't have been able to get through this. I won’t hesitate to recommend him to anyone!
Alexys Schuppe
Alexys Schuppe
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Finding the perfect family law attorney for my case was really hard. I searched the internet and stumbled upon Ryan. Ryan Besinque is among the smartest, sharpest, and the most experienced attorneys that I have ever met. He was always one step ahead of the situation. He gave fantastic legal advice and did a great job on my case. I definitely recommend him!
Kaelyn Wiegand
Kaelyn Wiegand
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The Law Office of Ryan Besinque was my first choice when I searched for a divorce lawyer. Ryan and his team are the best! They listened and drafted all the legal documents I required. They kept me up to date with all the steps and deadlines so that my divorce was completed quickly. I would highly recommend this law firm.
Samara Glover
Samara Glover
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Attorney Ryan Besinque was a great help during my difficult divorce. He is a highly experienced, seasoned, and no-nonsense attorney. He provided excellent advice and clarity in my divorce proceedings. Ryan, thank you! You are the best divorce lawyer in New York!

Family Law Attorneys at the Law Office of Ryan Besinque Explain the Types of Custody

Child custody is broken down into two specific types: physical and legal custody.

Physical custody

This is where the child will primarily reside.

Legal custody

This is who will make the major decisions concerning the child’s education, medical care, religion, and other general welfare matters.

From there, custody may further be broken down into sole or joint custody.

Joint custody

Is where parents share the physical or legal custody of their children. When parents share physical custody, a schedule will determine which parent the children will live with at given times. In most cases, joint physical custody allows both parents the benefit of significant involvement in their children’s lives.

Sole custody

This is when one parent is the custodial parent, and the other has certain visitation rights for parenting time that are set out in the child custody agreement.

There are many variations of custody arrangements. The terms of any child custody and parenting time set out in the child custody agreement will be legally binding for both parents. In most cases, it is imperative that child custody is served when both parents can cooperatively co-parent their children mutually and fairly but if this is not possible, a custody arrangement will be ordered by the court and both parents are then bound by its terms. Check below the meaning of these terms:

May be mutually agreed upon or awarded by the court. In the case of sole physical custody, one parent is awarded primary guardianship, with the other allotted parenting time or visitation under a predetermined schedule. Joint physical custody is where children can spend time in either parent’s household under the terms of the agreement. This shared time is not necessarily a 50/50 time split but will consider each parent’s schedules and what is most convenient for them.

May be mutually agreed upon or awarded by the court to one parent who then makes the legal decisions on behalf of the child. Joint legal custody allows both parents to mutually make important decisions regarding the health, education, religious upbringing, and other matters of the child. This requires that co-parents find a way to work cooperatively with one another for the benefit of their children.

Getting the assistance of skilled New York lawyers or mediators may enable you and your partner to come to a custody agreement that benefits both you and your children. Whether you are new to the concept of a child custody agreement or not, proper representation is imperative. Call for a free consultation with Ryan Besinque, a New York family law attorney regarding your child custody case today.

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Is There a Preferred Custody Arrangement for Children?

While every family’s circumstances are different, joint custody arrangements are usually most advantageous for the well-being of children. In the best of scenarios, joint custody minimizes parental conflict and competition and requires co-parents to find ways to work together for the benefit of the children.

When possible, the courts will be more supportive of joint custody arrangements. In cases where the parties are hostile toward each other and cannot communicate amicably, the court will not award joint custody, and one parent will be granted sole custody of the children, while the other parent will only have visitation rights.

When neither parent can find common ground in custodial decisions, it would help to have an experienced New York custody attorney or a New York mediator to assist in negotiations in your case toward a mutual resolution. Remember, a court will always hold a child’s best interest in mind when making a custodial decision. Contact the Law Office of Ryan Besinque to speak with a New York family law attorney today (929) 251-4477.

Learn more about Child Custody:

One parent will still be obligated to pay child support, even in joint custody arrangements. In most cases, the primary custodial parent will be entitled to child support from the non-primary parent. If the couple split their time evenly, then the parent with the higher income will typically be considered the non-primary parent and be responsible for child support.

Parenting time, or visitation, is the time that a noncustodial parent is allotted to see his or her child. A detailed visitation schedule becomes part of the child custody agreement, and both parents are bound by its terms. 

It is paramount that neither parent disagrees with this schedule, but there are cases when it must be imposed by the court. Before it becomes the court’s decision, it would help to have the experienced representation of a family law attorney to help forge a parenting schedule that is agreeable to both parties.

Domestic violence impacts all areas of life including the welfare and wellbeing of a child. It will also have a significant effect on who will get guardianship of the child in a divorce in New York. Victims of domestic abuse must seek the assistance and guidance of New York attorneys with experience in criminal domestic violence to ensure their safety and wellbeing and that of their offspring.

In cases when domestic violence has been a factor in the marriage or one of the individuals’ personal history, the courts must consider it when making a custodial determination. But domestic violence cannot just be an allegation by one partner against the other. There must be proof of that violence to be considered in a child custody matter.

The state of New York defines domestic violence as “a pattern of behaviors used by one partner to maintain power and control over another partner in an intimate relationship.”

These behaviors are not always physical. They can include other forms of control, including:

  • Physical violence
  • Sexual abuse
  • Emotional abuse
  • Economic control
  • Mental and psychological abuse

Intimate relationships can include:

  • Individuals related by blood
  • Individuals related by marriage
  • Former spouses
  • The couple and their children
  • Individuals who reside together or have previously resided together
  • Individuals who have children in common, regardless of whether they were ever married or resided together
  • Individuals who are in or who formerly had a dating relationship

In divorce and child custody matters in New York, it is paramount for the victims of domestic violence to seek safety first. After that, criminal charges may be brought against the abuser. The court may approve an order of protection that will limit that individual’s ability to come into contact with you or your children.

Unfortunately, domestic violence is only one factor when determining child custody in New York. The other partner may still receive some form of parenting time with the child. It is vitally important for victims of domestic violence to get the skilled legal counsel of attorneys for child custody in New York, as these matters can be extremely complicated.

A court may order visitation for a child and the child may not be able to just refuse visitation. However, the court can refuse visitation if the child is harmed by the noncustodial parent. Sometimes, however, the child doesn’t want or can’t visit the noncustodial parent as frequently as the court ordered. The custodial parent’s lawyer can request a modification to the visitation schedule from the court. However, the court order cannot be ignored. The court will grant the child’s wishes more weight if they bring a request to change the visitation schedule.

If the parents are separated, the court will want the child to be able to establish a strong relationship with both parents. The court may deny visitation rights to a child if it is harmful to the child. Visitation rights can be denied if the parent is abusive, neglectful, or using drugs towards the child.

If the court believes that contact with the noncustodial parent is beneficial for the child, it may order supervised visits. There could be a risk due to drug abuse, domestic violence history, or other factors. New York courts may allow supervised visitation if visitation takes place in a neutral, safe location with supervision by therapists or other trained personnel.

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Getting the Skilled Legal Guidance of a New York Child Custody Lawyer

There is little that is more contentious or difficult during a divorce than partners who cannot agree on the child custody. A child who is caught in the middle of an unfriendly divorce or custody battle can suffer greatly.

At The Law Office of Ryan Besinque, we work diligently to ensure that the safety and wellbeing of the child are the focus of a custody arrangement and are committed to reaching agreements to that end. Our skilled child custody attorneys in New York are in your corner each step of the way to ensure a safe and fair custody arrangement for you and your children. Contact us for a complimentary consultation to discuss your case.

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