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In this case a father appealed a decision of the Family Court to suspend his visitation. The original custody order followed the parents’ divorce.  The father was granted visitation.  The order was later modified requiring that the father’s parental access had to occur in a public place.  The mother again petitioned the court to modify the custody order, further restricting the father’s access to the child.  The Family Court granted the mother’s petition and suspended the father’s access altogether.  The father appealed.

When the Family Court issues a final custody order, it will only change it if the circumstances have significantly changed, as a custody order is issued only after the court has carefully considered substantial testimony and evidence.  Often there is testimony from medical professionals.  When appropriate the child will testify and give his or her preference.  The goal of Family Court is always to facilitate healthy relationships between the child and both parents, and works with both parents to make sure that they each get to spend a significant amount f time with the child.  However, each case is different.  Ultimately, the child court will take all of the information presented and make a custody decision based on what is in the best interests of the child.  In some cases that may mean that it is necessary to modify the order so that the visitation is restricted.

Circumstances that would warrant a change to a custody order include a change in the lifestyle of the household, such as a new job that requires the parent to be absent often.  Substance abuse or violence in the household would require a modification as it is not in the best interests of the child to be in a dangerous environment.  If a parent experiences physical or mental health problems such that he or she would have difficulties caring for the child or such that the child would be in danger, the court would consider modifying the custody order.  Of course, the court will consider the preference of the child, particularly when the child gets older.

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D.E. v S.F. & T.E.

The motion to dismiss for lack of standing filed by the defendants, and dismissal of visitation rights filed by the plaintiff are denied. The plaintiff’s cross motion is granted in part and denied in part.

In February of 2018, the petitioner who lives in Nassau County filed a Visitation Petition in Nassau Family Court seeking visitation rights of her grandson. The matter was transferred to Kings Family Court in March of 2018, because the child lives in Brooklyn with his parents.

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Matter of T v C

Decision

Pursuant to the Family Court Act, Article 6, a mother appeals from a Family Court order dated 1/10/18. The order granted the father’s petition for sole physical and legal custody, and awarded the other partial access, but denied her sole custody.

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C vs C

This case was filed for divorce and ancillary relief. The defendant appeals a prior judgment dated March 24, 2014. In that decision, the order denied the defendant’s cross-motion which was to use one-third of the child’s time spent in Israel visiting with the paternal grandmother. The prior decision also denied without prejudice the portion of the cross-motion which ordered visitation with the paternal grandmother when she was in the U.S.

This court affirms.

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In this case, the petitioner filed against the respondent to whom she is married and has one child. The petitioner received a temporary order for protection against the respondent. This was ordered to direct the respondent to cease from all communications with the petitioner, except those relating to the care of the child. Through various court appearances, the order was extended. The petitioner filed various violation petitions.

The violation petitions were consolidated. The court concluded that she failed to prove a family offense petition, but the court sustained the violation petition and issued a one-year final protection order.

The respondent appealed, and the appellate court affirmed. One dissenting justice claimed that the family court lacked jurisdiction for the final order because the family offense petition had been dismissed [147 AD3d 675]. The court certified to this court regarding this issue.

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2017 NY Slip Op 06309

August 23, 2017

Decision

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No. P-3017

May 25, 2017

The parties, in this case, were domestic partners. After 2005, they decided to have children. K.H. would carry the children and become pregnant via a sperm donor. The parties separated in 2011.

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The minor respondent Kenroy, 14 years old was arrested and charged with various adult crimes. Pursuant to a petition filed on 11/16, he admitted the offense of reckless endangerment in the second degree, which is classified as a misdemeanor. The court ordered an investigative report be done, which is called an I&R. This report recommended an adjournment in contemplation of a dismissal for 6 months with a referral to prosocial programs. The report concluded that the respondent was at a low risk for recidivism. The victim requested restitution.

The presentment agency’s position is that the least restrictive course of action should be taken on the condition that the respondent pays restitution for medical costs. The attorney for the minor argued that the family could not afford restitution.

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