What Types of Custody Are Awarded in New York?

Parents who are going through a divorce often worry about the future of their child. In addition to this, they tend to be concerned about the amount of time and influence they will have in their child’s life moving forward. This is because a parent can be awarded different types of custody throughout the divorce proceedings. During this time, an experienced New York family law attorney can assist parents in reaching the best possible custody agreement for their situation. 

What Types of Custody Are There in New York?

In the state of New York, there are two types of custody: legal custody and physical custody. Legal custody determines the influence a parent has in making important decisions about their child. This can be obtained by one parent or both of them jointly. Joint legal custody means the spouses share equal influence when dealing with these matters. The court tends to favor this type of custody unless the following circumstances are present:

  • The parents cannot effectively communicate regarding the children
  • The parents’ inability to co parent together
  • A lack of involvement of one parent in their child’s life
  • An unwillingness of one parent to place the child’s needs before their own
  • An unwillingness of one parent to make compromises about decisions regarding the child

Physical custody is in regard to the child’s physical location, meaning where they spend their time. Two parents that share joint physical custody have equal time and contact with the child. If one parent has sole physical custody, the child spends the majority of their time with them but the non-custodial parent has parenting time. The parenting time schedule can vary depending on the facts of the case. 

How Does a Judge Determine Custody?

In order to determine a child’s custody arrangement, New York courts take many different factors into consideration. This can include but is not limited to:

  • The parents’ ability to communicate, cooperate, and agree regarding matters of the child
  • The parents’ willingness to accept custody and any unwillingness to allow parenting time
  • The relationship of the child with their parents and siblings
  • Any history of domestic violence
  • The safety of the child and the safety of one parent from another
  • The preference of the child when of sufficient age
  • The child’s needs
  • The stability of the home environment
  • The quality and continuity of the child’s education
  • The fitness of both parents
  • The geographical proximity of the parents’ homes
  • The parents’ employment responsibilities

Contact our Firm

Matters of divorce and family law should be navigated with the guidance of an experienced attorney. 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.