Wednesday, October 29, 2014

How will two family court cases affect each?

Q:  the first case is visitation and custody with my children, and the second case is against my girlfriend (no children involved) for violence against me. How will the second case affecr the first in, if it does? What should i expect? Would the judge think i make bad choices in selecting mates? Etc.

Additional information
With police intervention, I was able to retrieve my personal property from my girlfriend and prior to departing, the police informs me not contact her and I asked he gave same instructions to her, He replied he had given the same instructions. Later than evening, I received a message from her friend to trying to reach out to me, who also received the same instruction of no contact. Does this trigger the mandatory arrest for DV in NYC? Where do I report in Manhattan?

A:  David's Answer:  Not necessarily - assuming your girlfriend is a different person than the mother in your custody case. Moreover, it's unclear whether the mother in the custody case would even find out about the family offense case against your girlfriend. Schedule a consult with a NYC Child Custody attorney for a full assessment.   -- David Bliven, Bronx Child Custody attorney (

How long will a visitation schedule change procedings take

Q:  the child's father has typically joint legal custody and gets the child every alternate weekend the father has filed for visitation schedule modification based on the fact he is moving different state if i object to himm having the legal custody . does it need a trial?

A:  David's Answer:  The general rule is that the Court needs to hold a trial before changing an order. Sometimes however, the court conducts enough pre-trial hearings that the Judge no longer feels there are facts left to be tried. The process could take several months. Schedule a consult with a NYC Child Custody lawyer for a full assessment.   -- David Bliven, Bronx Child Custody attorney (

Child custody/visitation

Q:  my son's father has visitation every alternate weekend.He lives in a room with shared kitchen and bath.what are my chances of getting the visitstions limited to day visits

A:  David's Answer:  What were the father's housing accommodations at the time the order was done? Generally you must prove a "change of circumstances" & if he lives in the same place he did previously, then there's no change. If he downgraded his housing, however, then the Court would likely order a home study to ensure its safe for the child. Schedule a consult with a NYC Child Custody lawyer for a full assessment.   -- David Bliven, Bronx Child Custody attorney (

The non custodial parent lied when filing a visitation petition. How does the judge look at the situation?

Q:  I denied visitation (out of state) based on the fact that the nc parent physically abused the child when I did let the child go away (out of state). now the nc parent filed for petition (after many years) and lied and said that it is always a problem when it is time for the nc parent to see the child (LIE). Would a judge grant visitation in my home state or would the judge force me to let my child go out of state? I will go see a lawyer soon but was just curious. Currently there is no visitation order.

A:  David's Answer:   Generally if the noncustodial parent lives out-of-state the Judge will permit visits in the noncustodial parent's state. There are many exceptions to this, however, and more facts would be needed on: age of child, child's preferences (if old enough), the circumstances & ability to prove the past abuse as well as the length of time the other parent has gone without seeing the child. Schedule a consult with a NYC Child Custody lawyer for a full assessment.   -- David Bliven, Bronx Child Custody attorney (

Saturday, October 18, 2014


Q:  When I go to pickup my daughter from her mother's house I can see through the door that there are electrical wires hanging and small Christmas lights hanging. I am worried about my daughter grabbing it and getting hurt. Can I report it to cps? Would they consider this as a case unless and until something happens or how to go about this.

A:  David's Answer:  I'd first advise to communicate your concerns to the mother. Give her a chance first to correct the problem. As to whether you report this to CPS and/or file a modification petition should be fully assessed by a lawyer. Thus, schedule a consult with a NYC Child Custody lawyer.  -- David Bliven, Bronx Child Custody attorney (


Q:  Is it responsibility of the custodial parent to provide clothes diapers food etc for non custodial parents for their over night visitation? If nothing about the above is mentioned in our decree.

A:  David's Answer:  Generally the non-custodial parent must provide items likes clothes & food when caring for the child. If s/he is paying full support, they can always argue for a small reduction on same if the have nearly equal time to the custodial parent, however. Schedule a consult with a NYC Child Custody lawyer for a full assessment.  -- David Bliven, Bronx Child Custody attorney (

In New York there is a law punishing parents who fraudulently accuse the other parent of abuse of the child. What is the law?

Q:  I have read that there is a law in New York that punishes parents who knowingly and fraudulently accuse the other parent of abuse to get custody of the children. I would like to be able to read the law and, hopefully, contact the individual who authored the law. Can anyone cite the law for me and provide the name of the author of the law?

A:  David's Answer:  Yes, filing a false report of child abuse is a misdemeanor (NYS Penal Law Sec. 240.50(4)). Furthermore, if proven, it may also be a strong factor against awarding the false accuser custody. Schedule a consult with a NYC Child Custody attorney for a full assessment.  -- David Bliven, Bronx Child Custody attorney (

My child lives in anothers state how can I file for shared custody

Q:  I live in nyc and they lives in p.A

A:  David's Answer:  You'd most likely need to file for custody in PA if the child's been there for more than 6 months & if there's no prior NY order. Schedule a consult with a NYC Child Custody lawyer for a full assessment.  -- David Bliven, Bronx Child Custody attorney (

Friday, October 17, 2014

Will my trip with a 3yo for 10 days affect custody decision?

Q:  My wife filed for order of protection against me for herself and 3yo dayughter. A few days later she filed for divorce asking for full custody of 3yo. After I won the order of protection and it was dismissed, i returned home. She changed her mind on exclusive occupancy (requested in her divorce complaint) and did not object to living together again. A month after order of protection was dismissed and children services investigation found her report unfounded, she allowed me to travel for 10 with 3yo to florida to see grandparents. Is her recent consent to my return home and travel with 3 yo contradictory to her original allegations. Will her contradictoy behavior affect custody?

A:  David's Answer:  Not necessarily as it depends on what those allegations were. If, for instance, she alleged she feared for her safety - then that may have been true at the time she completed her petition, but not necessarily true any longer. Thus, you should schedule a consult with a NYC Child Custody attorney for a full assessment.  -- David Bliven, Bronx Child Custody attorney (

How does it affect custody if one parent moves out of state?

Q:  My wife filed for divorce and sole custody of our daughter; she has no job, no place to stay in NY but she still lives at our marital residence I am paying for. If I move to FL where my family lives, how will it affect the custody determination? Thank you.

A:  David's Answer:  If you move & leave the child with her, then it won't affect custody at all. You moving, in itself, doesn't change anything regarding custody. Schedule a consult with a NYC Child Custody lawyer for more info.  -- David Bliven, Bronx Child Custody attorney (

Can i visitation of my kids, even if i have a domestic violence case against me?

Q:  3 years back i had been charged with domestic violence. I just want to know if i go to courts for as petition, would they grant me rights of child visitation? or would they deny me, because of my violent history?

A:  David's Answer:  You can absolutely have visitation with your children, even with the domestic violence charge. As to whether your visits will be supervised or otherwise restricted will depend on other factors, such as whether you were actually convicted & the seriousness of the charge. Schedule a consult with a Bronx Child Custody lawyer for a full assessment.  -- David Bliven, Bronx Child Custody attorney (

In a pendete lite motion (supreme court), what kind of schedule will the judge order for visitation?

Q:  I am trying to understand if I ask for relief will I get more than 1 overnight every two weeks?

Additional information
I am seeking more than this. Have residence and let's assume no to claims. What is the schedule the judge typically order?

A:  David's Answer:  Generally a non-custodial parent will get alternate weekend visitation, which is usually Friday evening thru Sunday evening. That said, there's many exceptions to the general rule, including historical visitation patterns, existence of negative factors (d.v., criminal, abuse/neglect, etc.), inadequate housing and/or unsuitable roommates (i.e., ones with a criminal history). Schedule a consult with a NYC Child Custody attorney for a full assessment.  -- David Bliven, Bronx Child Custody attorney (

Friday, October 10, 2014

What to do when a parent is abusing her sole legal custody on the other parent? Can you manage to reverse or modify the order?

Q: My ex-wife obtained full legal custody after a long trial last June. Since then her lawyer and her told me now she has full custody she can do whatever she wants. I am French and she is American. She called the French embassy saying that they shouldn't see me if I was presenting there with my daughter, she called every French school to tell them that she was refusing that I take my daughter to some activities there sending them the custody agreements. She is sending me tons of emails telling me that her daughter doesn't want to be with me, she is constantly sending me emails ordering me to do things during my time and how I should do things, she is harassing me, talk on behalf of her daughter and abusing me psychologically. I can't sleep, I am followed by a doctor. I have to stop that.

A: David's Answer: You can certainly file a motion/petition to modify the last order. Whether you should do so would depend on an assessment of many more factors than what you've presented, including a review of the trial decision. - David Bliven, Bronx Child Custody attorney (

My ex has the residential custody and we have joint legal custody

Q: If I were to move to California because of my new spouse in this state and get the visitation schedule will I lose the joint custody ?

A: David's Answer: The move in itself wouldn't necessarily be a basis to vacate the joint custody, as same relates to decision-making - which you can presumably do from anywhere. That said, your ex may be able to argue certain decisions warrant closer involvement, such as actually attending PT conferences and/or doctor's appointments. - David Bliven, Bronx Child Custody attorney (

Thursday, October 9, 2014

Can I lose custody of my children because I am pregnant to a man who is not my husband?

Q: NYC Husband agreed to go into mediation and file no fault divorce with joint physical joint legal in 3 months. I have just found out I am pregnant by another man. Husband and I have not had sexual relations in 2 years. I have been the primary care taker for my kids.

A: David's Answer: While its a factor the court may consider, in my mind it would be a relatively small factor in itself. There are many other custody factors which will likely play a bigger role.  - David Bliven, Bronx Child Custody attorney (


Q: If awarded sole residential custody then does it mean the person was awarded sole legal custody as well?

A: David's Answer: Not necessarily. One can be awarded sole residential custody, but have joint custody as to decision-making. One would need to see the actual order to see what it says.  - David Bliven, Bronx Child Custody Law attorney (

What are the responsibilities of a legal aid?

Q: I am in a custody battle with my abusive ex. I recently had to request a new legal aid because my previous attorney did not speak to me for a year, except for five minute visits before court. She offered me no support or guidance, and my visitations were suspended due to her negligence. 

I am wondering exactly what services are legal aides supposed to provide, their responsibilities to their clients, their responsibilities to their edict, their profession. 

My children's lawyer asked for two lawyers to be assigned to the children, one for each child, but she was denied her request. Was it in the best interests of the children for her to continue representing both children after expressing overwhelm? What responsibility is she overlooking? Is it in the child's best interest for her to avoid communications with parents, and completely disregard the father's reluctance to provide reports about their homeschooling?

A: David's Answer: There are indeed guidelines governing the representation of indigent person by assigned counsel in Family Court. They may be found here: If you believe your lawyer provided inadequate representation, you can request assignment of a new lawyer and/or file a grievance with the Bar Association.  - David Bliven, Bronx Family Law attorney (

I want to relocate with my husband, I have a 10 year from another relationship and I have full custody of him.

Q: I currently reside in New York but want to relocate to Rhode island, on the court papers it states nothing about not being able to relocate, his father doesn’t call him look for him or even take me to court for visitations so I assume he doesn’t really care. The reason for relocating is I’m about to have another baby with my husband and spouse of 9 years, he has family in Rhode island is better for the kids so my husband and I think it’s the best move for our growing family. My son wants to move so badly. Now I’m in court with the fathers parents they want visitation but as for the father I don’t even know where he lives nor do I have a number to contact him at. Can I just move or do I have to go to court first to request permission for relocation.

A: David's Answer: If the father is not expressly consenting to the move, then you'll need to file a petition asking the court for permission to move. I have seen horror stories where the mother just moves in these circumstances, and then the Judge orders her to return the child to the jurisdiction (at her expense) pending a full trial.  - David Bliven, Bronx Child Custody attorney (

Sole custody

Q: If my ex has sole custody can I get to claim my daughter on taxes alternate year or should we have joint legal custody for that to happen?

A: David's Answer: Neither would help you. IRS regulations provide that whoever is the primary residential parent gets to claim the deduction for the child. If you want to claim any aspect of the deduction, you'd need to bring this up in the child support end of the case. - David Bliven, Bronx Child Custody attorney (


Q: What does "Sole residential custody" means?

A: David's Answer: It means the parent in whose home the child resides 51% or more of the time. It is to be distinguished from the terms "sole custody" & "joint custody." - David Bliven, Bronx Child Custody attorney (

Should I obtain a lawyer

Q: I changed the court order from supervised visits for drug allegations against my daughter father and now I notice I made a mistake and want to by allowing him to have my daughter unsupervised on multiple occasions because I was being nice. Now I want to change the court order and make it supervised because he called her a mean name by saying she's a punk and letting her watch pg13 stuff when she's only 6 years old... My daughter said daddy called her a mean word and she does not want to go back. I told her she doesn't have to but my daughter father is saying that's against the law and I was already negligent by changing the court order. If I want to enforce supervise visitations now or stop the visirations because my daughter said daddy hurt her feelings can I do so without any issues?

A: David's Answer: Preliminarily, I doubt - in itself - the facts you're presenting would serve as the basis for supervised visits. Perhaps it would serve as the basis for a more specific order, one which prohibits either parent from having the child view PG-13 or higher rated movies, for example. That said, you're almost always better off retaining a lawyer for Custody cases. - David Bliven, Bronx Child Custody attorney (

Custody and travel related

Q: The custodial parent is on temporary visa and wants to travel with the child out of country to their homeland, though cp provides the itenary the intentions of cp to return back and the law enforcement in the homeland is not competent and there is no treaty between US and the homeland. In this case as an NCP what can I do to prevent this travel?

A: David's Answer: Do you already have a custody order? Does it specifically permit the travel abroad? You may be able to do a further stipulation (which should be "so-ordered") having the CP purchase a surety bond to secure her return, which would otherwise then cover your legal expenses if the CP reneges on returning the child. - David Bliven, Bronx Child Custody attorney (

I was served a notice of motion but can't make it to the hearing, what do I do?

Q: I was granted full custody some months back and then I was granted relocation to Florida (I live in NY for now) a couple of months ago with visitation to be discussed among the parties. I am the mother and the father has filed a notice of motion to be heard. He was late to the last hearing and missed his opportunity. I was served Sept 27 and the hearing is Oct. 6. I am leaving NY to go to Florida this weekend since I have work lined up for next week. What do I have to do?

A: David's Answer: First, you're required to answer the motion in writing. Irrespective of your physical appearance, if you do not submit a written opposition, the motion could be granted on your default. Assuming you submit written opposition, then you can submit proof of your airline itinerary along with a letter to the Judge requesting an adjournment (be sure to copy same to the other party). - David Bliven, Bronx Child Custody attorney (

As a NCP if I had visitation if I am moving out of state

Q: Do I still get visitation? and if so how much...

A: David's Answer: Yes, you would still receive visitation. How much depends primarily on: (a) how much you're receiving now, and (b) how far away you're moving to. As a practical matter, there may also be consideration of the cost of such visitation. - David Bliven, Bronx Child Custody attorney (