Distribution of parental and custodial rights could vary based on the divorce proceedings. Sometimes, the court can allow both parties to share responsibilities. Other times, one parent can receive custody while the other party has minimal or no access to their child based on the situation. There could be many reasons why the court allowed this arrangement to happen.
In New York, the noncustodial party can seek custody and visitation rights by following the standard process:
- File petition to request or modify visitation rights – A party’s criminal record or household’s child protective documents can impact their eligibility to file the petition.
- Serve the petition and summons to the custodial parent – The proper way of serving these documents may change whether the filing party is a parent or a nonparent relative.
- Prepare for and attend the hearing – There can be preliminary steps before the hearing. Sometimes, the judge could appoint an attorney for the child. They may also order various reports or investigations to assess the capacities of the involved parties, which can be crucial to the court decision.
- Finalize based on the judge’s decision – If severe risks can endanger the child, the judge could deny the request. The final decision significantly hinges on the evidence and testimonies presented in court. Sometimes, the judge can grant the request if deemed reasonable. If beneficial for the child, there can also be restrictions, such as supervised arrangements.
These steps are the essential parts of the process, but they can shift based on the circumstances.
Taking the most appropriate measures
Each family is unique and may require other procedures. Sometimes, the judge could order mediation to help the parties reach an agreement without excessive court proceedings. Other cases could have more complications, especially if there are existing orders or a history of violations. Ultimately, the court will impose necessary measures to uphold the child’s best interests.