When is sole custody awarded?

In New York, there are two types of physical custody, joint and sole custody. When the court determines that both parents are suitable to have custody of a child, they will award joint custody. Typically in a joint custody agreement, one parent has slightly more parenting time than the other. The parent that spends more time with the child is known as either the primary caretaker or the custodial parent.

In some more extreme cases, the court will only grant physical custody to one parent. This is referred to as a sole custody award because one parent gets full custody and the other gets none. The court does not make this decision lightly, as it believes that children should be able to foster meaningful relationships with both of their parents. Unfortunately for some children, it is truly not in their best interest to be cared for by one of their parents. The court will weigh this decision heavily and takes many factors into consideration, such as:

  • The parent’s history of criminal behavior
  • The parent’s history of domestic violence
  • The parent’s history of substance abuse
  • The physical and mental health of the parent

If the court determines that a parent is “unfit,” they may award sole custody. If you have questions about custody in New York, contact our firm today.

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 to schedule a free consultation.