Are you dealing with a family law issue and need legal assistance? Read these 4 ways to get ahead on your family law case, then call us now.
1. Differences Between Joint Custody and Sole Custody
- Joint custody and sole custody are probably the two most common terms you will hear when discussing custody.
- With joint custody, the court’s most important presumption is that the two parents can communicate with the other parent and work together in raising your children.
- Most cases involve a joint custody agreement, with one spouse being designated as primary residential parent with whom the child lives.
- Sometimes, the primary residence may be shared, but one parent is usually designated as the primary residential parent and will probably receive child support.
- Sole custody gives one parent authority to make all decisions for the child without consulting the other parent, although the sole custodian may consult the other parent.
2. Spousal Maintenance
- As you go through the divorce process, you will hear the term “maintenance,” or “spousal maintenance,” which refers to support for a spouse.
- The court will consider a number of items in determining whether you are entitled to spousal maintenance.
- Since January of 2016, New York State has followed a statutory guideline for deciding on spousal maintenance which contains certain recommendations that guide the courts in determining maintenance.
- The courts consider disparity in income, length of the marriage, and other considerations such as your health, your age, your time in the workforce, the ages of your children, and any assets you might have.
- Maintenance is never automatic, but it is usually a consideration, so you should discuss it with an attorney.
3. Automatic Entitlement to Receive Maintenance
- Neither party is automatically entitled to receive spousal maintenance in New York State.
- The court looks at the circumstances of each situation individually.
- Although your lawyer may be able to give you an indication of maintenance entitlement or obligation, but neither is automatic.
- Grievances of one party against the other, such as cheating, are not likely to affect the court’s decision regarding maintenance.
4. Spousal Maintenance Duration
- Although there is no set answer to the duration of spousal maintenance, the primary consideration is usually the length of your marriage.
- In early 2016, New York State enacted a new law that sets forth specific maintenance guidelines based upon the duration of the marriage, and the longer the marriage, the longer the term of maintenance.
- In setting a term of maintenance, the court may consider other factors as well, including medical issues, available assets, job history, and ability to earn income.
Do you have questions about these 4 ways to get ahead on your family law case? Contact our experienced Buffalo Family Law Lawyers for dedicated representation. The law firm of Cole, Sorrentino, Hurley, Hewner & Gambino has been providing sound legal advice and representation in a variety of divorce and family law matters for more than 45 years. Let our experience work for you.
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