Parents want what is best for their children. Unfortunately, sometimes, parents cannot always agree on the definition of best, especially when dealing with the emotional issues of divorce, separation or various other circumstances. Problems with determining child custody matters do happen, and while there are many parents who can talk through things and figure out agreeable solutions, there are others in New York and elsewhere who will depend on the court to decide custody arrangements.
There really are only two ways in which child custody decisions are made: parent negotiation and court ordered. For those who are going through a divorce, the court will get involved if all other means have been exhausted in attempting to reach an agreement. For unmarried parents, fathers will likely have few options outside of court, as paternity will need to be established and custody requests will have to be formally submitted.
There are also cases of non-parents seeking custody — such as grandparents, close family friends or other relatives. These cases do require court intervention. In these and other instances, the court will have to determine what living situation will best suit the interests of the affected child. In order to do this, various factors will need to be considered.
An experienced family law attorney can help with parental and non-parental custody decisions — whether they can be settled through out-of-court negotiations or require formal court hearings. Especially in cases that must be heard in court, having legal counsel present can certainly prove valuable as working through the system can be challenging. With the right help, parents and non-parents in New York and elsewhere can achieve the best possible child custody arrangements for themselves and, most importantly, for the affected children.
Source: FindLaw, “How Child Custody Decisions Are Made”, Accessed on July 20, 2016