Articles Posted in Nassau

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It was on August 11, 1998, when a child was found abandoned by police officers in a bedroom of the home of respondent, (the child’s mother). The nine-year-old child had been bound with electrical cords, hooded with a pillowcase tied around his neck, and gagged with a sock stuffed in his mouth and secured by electrical tape wrapped around his face. A New York Family Lawyer said the child’s arms and legs had been tied so that he was forced to remain standing in a cruciform position; he was otherwise naked, and loud music was left playing in the room. The door to the room was taped shut. When discovered, the child had been tied up since August 7, 1998; he was found to have sustained several old and healing cuts and bruises, whip marks, and numerous scars and lacerations.

The Department of Social Services (hereinafter Department) petitioned against respondents, for a determination that the children are abused children. During the trial, the court issued a Fact-Finding Order and an accompanying decision on July 7, 1999. The court determined the facts recounted above and found that petitioner had adequately proven that the child was the victim of abuse perpetuated by respondent caretakers.

As defined by Family Court Act section 1012 (e) (i) and (ii). The said abuse comprised at least four occasions when the child was tied up and numerous occasions when he was whipped and beaten. The court further concluded that petitioner also met the higher burden of proving by clear and convincing evidence that the respondent repeatedly and severely abused the child. Therefore, a New York Child Custody Lawyer said in addition to the finding of abuse as to both respondents, the court found based upon clear and convincing evidence that the said child was the victim of severe and repeated abuse inflicted by respondent. Hence, an Order of Protection was issued by the court.

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The petitioner and appellant of this case is Reynaldo M. The respondent in the case is Violet F. The case is being heard in the First Department, Appellate Division, of the Supreme Court of the State of New York. This is a case of appeal. A New York Family Lawyer said the appellant, Reynaldo M. is appealing an order that was made in the Family Court of Bronx County by the Referee Annette Louise Guarino. The original order was made on or around the 15th of April in 1010 and granted the petitioner father contact with his child in the form of letters, mail, and gifts and the child was free to initiate telephone contact with the father if she desired.

Case Discussion

When reviewing the record of the case it is found that the lawyer of the father consented to the order and there is no appeal that can be entered on behalf of a consenting party. A Nassau County Family Lawyer said the lawyer was familiar with the situation and had represented the father on a number of occasions before this case.

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This matter deals with a support proceeding under article 4 of the Family Court Act. The petitioner and respondent in the case is Dorothy Silvestris. The respondent and appellant in the case is Frank Silvestris. The case is being heard in the Supreme Court, Appellate Division, and First Department. The appeal in this case deals with a court order that directs the appellant to pay $30 a week for support of his eleven year old daughter.

Case Background

The proceeding was started in the Family Court of Greene County where the petitioner and the daughter live. The appellant, who is the father of the child lives in Bronx County. The matter was transferred to the Family Court of Bronx County pursuant to the provisions of the Uniform Support of Dependents Law.

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A man and a woman had a turbulent romantic relationship that was marked by frequent disagreements. The disagreements resulted in a pattern of a parting of ways, a reconciliation; a revival of love only to end back in disagreements and a parting of ways.

In April 2000 when the man and the woman were living together in New York, the woman gave birth to their common child, a daughter. A New York Family Lawyer said a year later, the woman booted out the man from their shared apartment. That same month, the man filed a petition in the Family Court of New York asking for visitation rights with her natural daughter. Days after the man filed the petition the woman filed her own petition for sole custody of her daughter and permission to relocate to Virginia where, she said she was a permanent resident prior to the birth of her child and that she came to New York only three months before she gave birth. She also claimed that the man was verbally abusive and that he threatened her. The family court issued a temporary order of protection.

Initially, the family court held a hearing to find out if during the pendency of the actions for custody and visitation, the father can be given the privilege of supervised visitation with his daughter. The woman vigorously opposed the granting of supervised visitation rights to the man stating that the man was emotionally unfit as he suffered from depression and that his apartment was too small for her child to visit with her father. The Family Court nevertheless granted the father’s request for temporary visitation rights.

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The parties met in New York, while the defendant (husband) was on a vacation from his employment as a diplomat with the United Nation particularly, a Deputy Director of the United Nations Relief and Works Agency for Palestine Refugees in the Near East (UNRWA) in the Gaza Strip. At that time, the plaintiff (wife), was newly admitted to the New York bar and employed as an attorney with a law firm.

A New York Family Lawyer said that the defendant transferred to Jerusalem as Director of UNRWA operations. A New York Divorce Lawyer said that the parties maintained a long-distance relationship for a year until the plaintiff terminated her employment in New York and joined the defendant in Jerusalem, where she became a Lecturer and Program Supervisor. For over a year of living together, they married each other at the British Consulate in Jerusalem.

Thereafter, defendant was transferred to Lebanon while the plaintiff had been a working with the United Nations Development program in Jerusalem and continued for a few months more before joining defendant in Lebanon. The parties’ child was born in Beirut, Lebanon.

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The Facts:

Respondent is the biological mother (herein the respondent-mother) of six-year old boy (the subject child or the child) conceived through artificial insemination and born in December 2003. A New York Family Lawyer said the respondent-mother and petitioner met in 2002 and entered into a civil union in the State of Vermont in November 2003, the month before the subject child’s birth. The respondent-mother repeatedly rebuffed petitioner’s requests to become the child’s second parent by means of adoption.

Sometime in the spring of 2006, the relationship between the respondent-mother and petitioner soured and they separated. Thereafter, respondent-mother allowed petitioner to have supervised visits with the child each week on a Sunday, Wednesday and Friday for specified periods of time, as well as daily contact by telephone. However, sometime in the spring of 2008, respondent-mother began scaling back the visits. By early May of 2008, she had cut off all communication between petitioner and the child.

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The Facts:

On 16 January 1981, plaintiff and defendant were married in New York. On 10 September 1983, their daughter was born.

A New York Family Lawyer said the defendant claims that she, plaintiff, and their daughter moved to Israel in about 1987, with the intention of living there permanently. On the other hand, although they purchased an apartment in Israel, plaintiff claims that he had no intention of permanently relocating there and had applied for permanent residency in that country only to obtain government benefits for defendant and their daughter.

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This case arose from a divorce proceeding which was commenced in Massachusetts. Respondent’s physical custody of the two minor children was initially pursuant to the parties’ May 21, 1993 separation agreement. A New York Family Lawyer said that agreement provided for joint custody, with primary physical residence with respondent and liberal visitation with petitioner. It further provided that petitioner would pay child support to respondent in accordance with the Massachusetts Child Support Guidelines, and that “[t]his Agreement shall be construed and governed according to the laws of the Commonwealth of Massachusetts.”

A judgment of divorce incorporating the separation agreement was entered in Massachusetts on April 13, 1994.

In 1995, Respondent relocated to Buffalo, New York with the parties’ two children in accordance with an agreement entered in by the parties in a Massachusetts Proceeding which sought the court’s authorization to relocate the children to Buffalo, New York. The said agreement further provided that “Massachusetts will retain jurisdiction over the children and the parties to the extent otherwise consistent with law and for so long as petitioner remains a resident in the Commonwealth.”

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In a contested child protective and child custody proceeding, the administration for children’s services sought an order directing the removal of the child from the home of the paternal grandmother who resides in Virginia. The motion is supported by the law guardian and opposed by the parents of the child.

The administration for children’s services filed a neglect petitions against the parents of the child alleging that they neglected the child by inflicting excessive corporal punishment causing numerous marks and bruises on the child’s body. A New York Family Lawyer said the petitions allege that the child was beaten by the mother with an extension cord and punched by both parents. In addition, the petitions allege that the father is a person legally responsible for the child because of the fact that he is married to the child’s mother. Lastly, the petitions allege that the other two children of the parents are derivatively neglected children.

On the day the petitions were filed, a hearing was conducted and granted the application for the remand, directing that the child will be placed with the maternal great-grandfather and that the two younger children be placed together with kinship resources. During the months that followed the initial removal, the two younger children were moved several times and are currently in their second non-kinship foster home.

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The court is called upon to make certain decisions based upon a dispute involving allegations that a mother, through her actions, actively and passively alienated and influenced a child to the point that the child may no longer have any inclination or desire to see her father again. A New York Family Lawyer said as equally important, the court must also determine the credibility of claims of egregious domestic violence during a long-term marriage of 31 years alleged to have been perpetrated against the mother, herself an advocate for the rights of women in divorce actions.

One of the most difficult decisions a Judge has to make is that which impacts upon the life of a child. The law has long recognized the special place and role of the court in deciding issues relating to children and the long term impact that our courts have on the life of a child.

The parties were married in August 1973. The wife is 52 years of age and the husband is 56 years of age. On the date of their marriage, the husband was 22 years of age and a college graduate while the wife was then 18 years of age and a high school graduate. During the course of the marriage, four children were born to the parties, the eldest daughter, age 32; the eldest son, age 26; the youngest son, age 20; and the youngest daughter, age 13. A Nassau County Family Lawyer said the two youngest children, the youngest son (presently age 20) and the youngest daughter (presently age 13), remain un-emancipated. During the course of the litigation the youngest son resided in Israel or was a resident student at a university. It appears the youngest son is fully and voluntarily supported by the father and does not permanently reside with either party, although he does reside with the mother during the summer recess from school.

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