Everyone experiences a change in circumstances at some point in their lives. While people are good at adapting and doing what is necessary to keep moving forward, when children are involved, making the required changes can prove even more difficult. For divorced parents in New York and elsewhere, change often comes with the need to relocate. Whether you are a custodial parent, non-custodial parent or enjoy shared custody, if you need to relocate, you will first need to seek a child custody modification before making your move.
Many people have the mistaken belief that mothers get preferential treatment by the courts in child custody cases, but this isn't actually true. This myth likely gets its roots from the past, when mothers weren't likely to work outside the house and spent more of their time tending to the children. Because of this, the courts often did grant the mother primary physical custody since she had been the main caregiver to begin with. However, two-income families are now the norm, and fathers have greatly increased their overall involvement in their children's lives in the past few decades. This means that the New York family courts do not consider the mother the automatic choice for custodial parent.
Any adult going through divorce knows that the process is typically very stressful. The same holds true for any children involved. The kids often experience the same mental and emotional turmoil as their parents do. Just like Mom and Dad, their lives are being torn apart and must be carefully reconstructed.
The holiday season is supposed to be a time of joy with family and friends. Unfortunately, many families aren't experiencing "peace on earth" right now. When one parent is abusive, neglectful or otherwise unable to provide appropriate care for his or her children, it can turn the holidays into one of the most stressful and dangerous times of the year.
In child custody disputes and other parenting matters, the New York courts have considerable authority. They can decide that a certain parenting time arrangement is not in the child's best interests. They can decide whether or not a father can move out of state with his children. They can even decide that an abusive mother should not be allowed to spend time with her children at all.