Will I Get Custody of my Child After a New York Divorce?

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Custody is a complex situation. If you are a parent getting divorced, you may be wondering how custody is determined. Read on to learn more about custody in New York.

What are the different types of custody?

The first thing to understand about child custody is the different types that are awarded in New York:

  • Physical: The parent with physical custody is also known as the “custodial parent.” This parent is mainly responsible for providing the child with basic necessities, including food, a stable home, education, and more. The child will still go between the homes of both parents, depending on the arrangement.
  • Legal: This type of custody can be awarded to both parents, regardless of physical custody. Legal custody gives a parent the right to make important decisions in the lives of their children. These decisions may include matters of religion, education, and more.
  • Sole: In rare cases, a parent will be deemed unfit. When this occurs, the fit parent will be awarded sole custody.

How is Custody Determined?

Custody is taken very seriously. When it comes to making custody decisions, judges are working to do what is in a child’s best interest. To make this decision, he or she will consider:

  • Each party’s ability to provide financially for the child
  • The stability that each parent can provide
  • The ability of the parent to act in their child’s best interests
  • Each party’s relationship with the child
  • Each party’s history of domestic violence and substance/ alcohol abuse
  • Each party’s mental and physical health
  • Each party’s work schedule and lifestyle
  • The health and age of the child
  • The preference of the child, if of sufficient age

Why do parents lose custody?

NY judges believe a child benefits from having a relationship with both parents. As a result, it is rare that a parent loses custody. However, a parent may lose custody if there is evidence of:

  • Abuse
  • Neglect
  • Refusal to co-parent
  • Substance abuse

If you have any questions or concerns about custody in New York, our firm is here to help. Reach out today to discuss your case with an experienced and dedicated family law attorney.


Peter V. Mandi, Esq. is an experienced divorce and family law attorney located in Bohemia, New York. Our firm understands the impact a divorce can have on your life. If you require strong and dedicated legal representation in Long Island, New York, please do not hesitate to contact Peter V. Mandi & Associates, Inc. today.

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