What is the Process for Child Custody Mediation in New York?

When parents are divorcing, or if a couple decides to terminate their relationship, and there is a child born from the marriage/relationship, they may need child custody mediation to resolve any custody issues.  Child custody mediation can help determine how the children will be cared for and where they will live.

What Are Some Issues That May be Decided in Child Custody Mediation?

Child custody mediation should center around what is in the child’s best interest.  Since the parents are separating, it is imperative that a sound and careful resolution to the child’s living arrangements be determined.  Some of the basic issues that can be decided during mediation are:

  • which parent will assume physical custody;
  • if the parents should have joint custody;
  • if one parent should have sole custody;
  • Financial obligations for the child; and/or
  • Parenting time/visitation for the noncustodial parent and the child.

What is a Parenting Plan?

The goal of a successful mediation is to resolve all the custody issues.  A parenting plan can help outline the issues and can be used in mediation to convey the parent’s positions.  Determining a parenting plan that works for both parents can also help avoid any issues in the future and foster consistency for the child or children.  A parenting plan can include any of the following:

  • Decision making authority for the children;
  • Custody arrangement;
  • Health insurance;
  • Terms of the child’s routine, including consistency between the parent’s homes, extra-curricular activities, health and nutrition, and so on;
  • Access to medical and school records;
  • Relationship with other family members like grandparents or aunts and uncles
  • Plans for the child’s college education, Including a plan for cost and expenses
  • Child support; and/or
  • Additional costs for sports or other extra curricular activities.

If you need assistance with a child custody matter, contact an experienced family law attorney today.

If you need strong legal representation regarding matters of divorce, family law, and estate law, contact the Law Offices of Susan A. Kassel, P.C. to schedule a consultation today.