Published on:

Court Rules on Mother’s Motion for Attorney Fees

A New York Family Lawyer said in a child support proceeding, a father appeals from an order of the court, which denied his objection and granted the mother’s motion for an award of an attorney’s fee.

Subsequently, the court ordered to reverse the previous decision, on the law, without costs or disbursements, so much of the order, as granted the mother’s motion for an award of an attorney’s fee. The matter is also remitted to the family court, for a new determination of the mother’s motion.

A New York Child Custody Lawyer said sources revealed that in a previous related case, the court stated that even if the matter of counsel fees is entrusted to the sound discretion of the trial court, it is nonetheless controlled by the equities of the case and the financial circumstances of the parties.

The attorney’s fee at issue was awarded to the mother for legal fees she incurred in defending against the father’s petition for a downward modification of his child support obligation, and in prosecuting her petition to hold the father in civil contempt for his alleged violation of a prior support order.

In a related appeal, a Suffolk County Family Lawyer said the court is reversing the court’s denial of the father’s petition for downward modification of his child support obligation and remitting the matter to the court, for a new determination of the father’s petition.

With regards to the court’s decision and order, sources revealed that the court must reverse the award of an attorney’s fee to the mother insofar as it was in connection with her defense against the father’s dispute. In addition, the court is reversing the court’s finding that the father willfully violated the prior support order. As a result, even if the family court act provides for the award of an attorney’s fee to a prevailing party in connection with a violation proceeding, the mother is not entitled to such an award.

Consequently, a Suffolk County Child Custody Lawyer said after the support magistrate makes a new determination of the father’s petition for a downward modification of his child support obligation, they make a new determination on the mother’s motion for an award of an attorney’s fee. The court stated that any award of an attorney’s fee, if warranted, shall be limited to fees incurred in connection with the mother’s defense against the father’s petition.

Another court case was presented in court where a grandmother appeals from an order of the court, which, after a hearing, dismissed her petition.

Subsequently, the court ordered to reverse the previous decision, on the law, without costs or disbursements, and the petition is reinstated, and the matter is remitted to the court, for a new hearing, and thereafter, a new determination for the petition.

Based on records, even if the grandparents have no absolute or automatic right to visitation, the domestic relations law allows them to apply for visitation rights if the circumstances are such that equity would see fit to happen.

Under the particular circumstances of the case, sources revealed that the court improperly dismissed the grandmother’s request for visitation with her grandchild without first conducting a full inquiry into the matter to determine whether such visitation was in the child’s best interests.

Afterward, the family court terminated the hearing held on the petition without conducting an in camera interview with the child and without permitting the grandmother to complete her presentation. In addition, the court failed to admit into evidence a forensic evaluation report prepared by a clinical psychologist at the court’s direction, and did not give the parties an opportunity to assess the forensic expert.

As a result, the court remits the matter to the family court for a new hearing and, thereafter, a new determination for the appeal.

Whenever you need help with your child’s custody related action, you can hire the Kings County Family Lawyer or Kings County Custody Lawyer. Moreover, if you need assistance with your visitation rights as grandparents, you can seek help from the Kings County Child Visitation Attorney. You can call or just drop by at Stephen Bilkis and Associates office for more details.

Contact Information