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New York City Divorce Legal Blog

What should I consider when planning a teen's parenting schedule?

Every child has different needs according to the age of the child. For example, babies who are still receiving milk from their mothers will usually spend all of their time with the mother to begin with. As children grow up, though, their needs change. With teenagers, you'll want to consider the following information when planning a shared parenting schedule:

  • Teenagers, although they might be the size of adults, still need a lot of guidance and support, as well as parental oversight and nurturing. Involvement from both parents during the teenage years is extremely beneficial to a teen's development.
  • Teenagers also need to explore new things, develop relationships that aren't in their family, and get exposed to potentially new interests. As your teen is exploring, however, his or her plans and schedule could change drastically from month to month or semester to semester, so you'll want a parenting plan that is flexible.
  • Don't be surprised that your teen would rather spend time with his or her friends than with family. This reality should be factored into your parenting plan. Let your teen spend time with friends.
  • Your teen will probably get busier and busier with friends, jobs, sports and activities the older that he or she gets. Be flexible to your teen's needs in this regard.
  • Your teen will appreciate having control and independence over his or her schedule. Always take into consideration your teen's planning preferences.

Do you want solid advice on how to create a parenting plan for a teenager? A New York family law attorney can guide you through the process of negotiating and solidifying a balanced teenage parenting plan that suits the needs of your family.

Child custody disputes and domestic violence in New York

Have you or your child been victimized by domestic violence? If the other parent of your child has been convicted of any kind of domestic violence, this information will be considered by a New York family law court when deciding your child custody case. Courts will seek to protect your child from becoming the victim of further domestic violence from the other parent.

It's important to remember that domestic violence can take a variety of forms. It could include acts of mental, emotional, economic, sexual or physical abuse. If a judge sees that your child is at risk of being abused in any of these ways, the judge may choose to strip the abusive parent of all child custody rights. However, it's possible for a judge to award visitation rights if the judge feels that the child will not be at risk of suffering further abuse. The judge might also award supervised visitation to ensure that the child is safe during the visits with the other parent.

Can I get my marriage annulled?

Not every marriage is legally valid. If a New York family law judge determines that your marriage was unlawful, you might be able to apply for annulment.

Annulment is different from divorce because it recognizes that the love union was never valid. As such, an annulled marriage becomes a null and void marriage. The couples will be stripped of the marriage rights and treated by the courts as if they were never married.

The difference between a contested and uncontested divorce

If you are getting a divorce in New York, you definitely want to pursue an uncontested divorce. An uncontested divorce means that you and your spouse have been able to work through any potential difficulties and between yourselves and your respective attorneys, you've been able to arrive at an out-of-court divorce settlement agreement.

Uncontested divorces tend to be faster, cheaper, less stressful and, generally, a far better experience for everyone involved. However, uncontested divorces are not always possible if the two individuals are unable to reach agreement regarding some delicate topic concerning their divorce. Perhaps, for example, two parents are unable to agree on parenting time and custody issues. Or, maybe one spouse is seeking spousal support payments but the other spouse feels such payments are unwarranted.

How Do You Co-Parent When You Can't Get Along With Your Ex?

Whether you’re a parent who is contemplating, going through or already divorced; the well-being of your children is often a chief concern. While there are plenty of articles and advice columns written about how effective co-parenting arrangements benefit children of divorce, in some cases, these types of arrangements simply aren’t realistic.

What do you do when your ex-spouse is a narcissist or someone with whom you simply cannot effectively communicate or get along? If you and your ex-spouse are embroiled in a high-conflict relationship, attempting to co-parent isn’t only challenging and stressful for you, but may also be damaging to your children.

Is it time for you to sign a postnuptial agreement?

The benefits of having a prenuptial agreement on file are clear. Regardless your financial situation, a prenuptial agreement will make divorce -- if it becomes necessary in your case -- far easier, faster, cheaper and less stressful. However, what can already-married couples do now to receive these same benefits if they don't have a prenup on file?

A postnuptial agreement is similar to a prenup in all respects. The only difference is that couples complete the document after marriage has occurred. You might think that prenuptial agreements and postnuptial agreements are a sign that you don't have faith in the strength of your marriage. However, these documents can actually help to smooth out tension and increase the chances that your marriage endures -- especially where financial tensions are concerned.

What questions should I ask before filing for divorce?

Often one of the most important elements in life is not about the information we know; it's about our ability to ask the right questions. According to a recent New York times article, the same may be true for divorce. The article details questions posed by divorce experts. These questions, when asked by those considering divorce, could help spouses make their divorce happen smoother, or avoid divorce altogether.

Here are four of the questions you may want to ask your spouse and yourself before filing the divorce papers:

How signing a prenup can be beneficial for a young professional

Many who marry young and have little to no assets to their name would never think twice about drafting a prenup before marrying. For one, they believe that their love story is meant to last. And second, they feel as if they have nothing now, so what do they have to protect from their soon-to-be spouse's grasp? Relationship experts argue couples have more to lose from not signing a prenup than they might think.

Even though you might think you're head over heels in love with your mate, life happens. Partners experience a shift in feelings and unforeseen circumstances arise making it impossible to continue making your marriage work. In situations such as this, a prenuptial agreement can make an equitable distribution of assets a much quicker process.

Tri-parenting custody agreements

It's not too long ago that a judge responsible for making a decision in a custody dispute only had to decide whether it was in the child's best interest to be taken care of primarily by mom or dad. Occasionally, there would be a circumstance in which an aunt or uncle, sibling, stepparent, or grandparent would make a case as to why they should be allowed to raise the child as well.

Recently, though, there have been an increasing amount of custody cases that have been fought across this country that would allow not just two, but three distinct parties to stake their claim as to who can best uphold the best interests of the child.

Reasons you may request a divorce in New York

When filing for divorce in New York, it's required that you state the grounds on which you're seeking to dissolve your marriage. You cannot mark down just any reason, but instead must choose one among seven different legally acceptable options that are allowable under Domestic Relations Law (DRL) §170.

Perhaps one of the most common reasons spouses request a divorce is because they deem their marriage to be irretrievably broken down. This option is commonly referred to as a no-fault divorce. In order to be eligible to file for a dissolution of your marriage under DRL § 170 (7), you must be able to prove that the breakdown in your relationship has lasted in excess of six continuous months.

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