New York Child Custody Lawyer
Family Court Attorney in New York
If you are interested in seeking custody of a child or modifying an existing custody order, you can file a petition with the
New York Family Court in your area. There is one Family Court in each of the five boroughs in New York City; filing a petition for custody or petition to modify custody is free if you file at the court in your county. You do not need a lawyer to file a petition and initiate these proceedings, but it is recommended that you involve a
Family Court Attorney who can advise you of your rights and options in this extremely important matter.
Your petition should state the reasons you believe you should have custody or why your existing custody order should be changed. It is important to include detailed information to ensure all applicable points will be reviewed by the Family Court judge. When you file your petition, you will see a judge who will set a date for you to return to court with the other party or parties involved. The court will also give you copies of the petition to give to the person you are filing against before the next court date. You will be responsible for ensuring that the petition is served on the respondent (the person you are filing them against) and must bring an affidavit of service to your next court date.
Child Custody Hearings in New York Family Court
When a child custody case is heard in New York Family Court, the judge will first determine whether the respondent was properly served and will hear both sides to see where they stand and whether an agreement can be made without going to trial. If the parties cannot reach their own agreement, the judge will most likely appoint an attorney to represent the child, suspend proceedings to another date and possibly order the Administration for Children’s Services to perform a Court-Ordered Investigation into the matter.
It is important to involve a lawyer to represent you, particularly if your case goes to trial in Family Court. The outcome of your child custody matter will affect you and your child or children for years into the future. With the know-how and experience to properly handle your case, an attorney can seek the best possible result on your behalf.
Contact a New York family court lawyer at our firm today to discuss your child custody case.