How Does Child Visitation Work in New York State?

Child custody is one of the most fiercely contested issues in divorce. When couples get divorced, they very often feel one is more entitled or capable than the other to raise their child. Additionally, parents love their child equally, and they both have a special bond unlike any other, so it is no surprise that parents do not want to part with their children. However, when you get a divorce, New York State courts believe that the terms of your child custody agreement should hold your child’s best interests above all else, so that his or her quality of life is disturbed as little as possible.
However, sometimes, the court will make a decision that you feel is completely out of line, and they may deny you of both physical and legal custody of your child. If you feel this decision was unfair, you are not alone. Fortunately, you can still see your child if you are able to secure your visitation rights. If this sounds like something that may work for you, please read on.

What does sole custody mean?

When you get divorced and are, for whatever reason, deemed unfit to be a parent by the court, your former spouse is generally granted sole custody of your child, making him or her what is known as the “custodial parent.” Some of the many reasons the courts may determine a parent is unfit at the present time can include substance abuse, incarceration, institutionalization, a history of domestic violence or more. However, the New York courts will generally allow you to see your child at scheduled times if you can prove that you are trying to correct your ways and genuinely want to have an open, honest, consistent, and positive relationship with your child. You may do so by applying for an Order for Visitation.

How do I obtain an Order for Visitation?

The first thing you should know is that Orders for Visitation are primarily reserved for a child’s parents, siblings, and grandparents. As stated above, you must first prove you are ready to have a positive relationship with your child, and likewise if you are a sibling or grandparent. However, the courts do not take these applications lightly, so if you feel you are entitled to spend time with either your sibling, grandchild, or child, you should first consider hiring a knowledgeable attorney who is ready to fight for your rights.

Contact our experienced Suffolk County firm

Peter V. Mandi, Esq. is an experienced divorce and family law attorney located in Bohemia, New York. If you require strong and dedicated legal representation in Long Island, New York, contact Peter V. Mandi & Associates, Inc. today.