Jurisdiction is an important issue in child custody hearings. Often the parents of the child live in different court jurisdictions, or even different states. A New York Family Lawyer said the courts must work with the parents to determine which court system will have jurisdiction over the matters that are involved in each case. In one Suffolk County case, the parents’ divorce was finalized in the Nassau County Family Court in 2002. Following that action, the mother was granted primary custody of the child of the union. She relocated to Suffolk County.
Since the time that the divorce was finalized and the mother moved to Suffolk County, the Suffolk County Family Court has handled at least one motion to adjust the visitation schedule that the couple had in place to manage the visitation of the child. In 2008, the father of the child made a motion to the Nassau County Family Court to change primary custody over to him. The mother filed a cross-motion to deny the father’s motion and to have all jurisdiction over future motions transferred to the Suffolk County Family Court. The mother maintains that the father has moved to Suffolk County in the years since the divorce was finalized. A Nassau County Family Lawyer said that means that at the time of this particular motion, the mother, father, and the child are all living in Suffolk County and no one is living in Nassau County.
The Supreme Court reviewed the motions and determined that the proper venue of any motions in this case would be the Suffolk County Family Court. They contend that since all concerned parties are living in Suffolk County, it only makes sense that the court system to handle their case should also be Suffolk County. The court also appointed a Law Guardian for the child.
A Law Guardian is an attorney who is assigned to determine what actions are in the best interest of the child who is involved in a custody dispute. A New York Child Support Lawyer said often the child has a better grasp of the inner workings of the family dynamics than either parent does. It is also the goal of the courts of New York to take the consideration of the child’s welfare into more importance than the desires of the parents. The goal is to protect the child of a divorced couple from having their life and lifestyle upset more than is necessary by the feuding of the parents. Toward this goal, the parent who has primary custody must ensure that they assist the child in developing a healthy relationship with the other parent. Failure of a parent to foster a positive relationship between the child and the other parent could result in severe sanctions being taken by the court. These court sanctions involve fines, punishments, counseling, and in severe situations, the courts have been known to remove a child from the custody of the parent who is intent on talking bad about the other parent.
In the past, parents were known to use the children as pawns in their torment of each other following a divorce. Recent scientific studies have revealed just how damaging that type of behavior can be to the mental development of a child. It is therefore, very important that the courts endeavor to prevent this type of behavior among the parents. When a parent brings a child into the world, they are entrusted with the most important job that anyone can ever have. Unfortunately, there are no tests to ensure that a parent is stable enough to raise a child. In the case at hand, the court determined that since everyone is living in the county of Suffolk, Suffolk Family Court would be the jurisdiction with the most information about the dynamics in this case. The mother’s motion was granted rendering the father’s motion moot until it is put toward the proper jurisdiction.
At Stephen Bilkis & Associates with its divorce lawyers there are convenient offices throughout New York State and Metropolitan area. Our child custody attorneys can provide you with advice to guide you through difficult situations, whether you have a custody issue or need an order for protection. Hiring a child visitation Lawyer can prevent you from losing precious time with your family.