Saturday, April 18, 2015

My son has custody of his daughter, in the event of something happening to him, who will the baby stay with?

Q:  Will the baby stay with the maternal or paternal grandmother?

A:  David's Answer:  If by "something happening to him," you mean his demise, the child would presumptively go into the custody of the mother. The grandparents would only have a case for custody if they can prove the mother persistently neglected or abandoned the child. Schedule a consult with a Bronx Child Custody attorney for more info.   -- David Bliven, Bronx Child Custody attorney (

Tuesday, April 14, 2015

Suicidal thoughts of non custodial parent

Q:  I am the custodial parent and my daughter lives with me in Ny. Her father who lives in another state expressed to me that he thinks about killing himself. That scares me to death. I want to file for sole custody of our daughter but only if i know it will work out for the best.

A:  David's Answer:  Draft an e-mail capturing the conversation, express your concern and state you think he should get help. As for custody, this will take a complete assessment of your individual situation. Thus, schedule a consult with a NYC Child Custody attorney.   -- David Bliven, Bronx Child Custody attorney (  

How do I give custody to my sister that lives in a different state

Q:  I have cancer and I can't walk.. I want my sister to care for my daughter while I'm here . Dad doesn't have a place to live with her. And she needs to go to school

A:  David's Answer:  She'd need to file a petition for custody & get both you & the Father served. If it's on consent everything should get done in 1 court date. Schedule a consult with a Bronx Child Custody attorney for a full assessment.   -- David Bliven, Bronx Child Custody attorney (

My wife does not hav custody or c my 5 kids. 4 the 2 kids that r 15/16 if i pass away can my domestic ptnr raise them?

Q:  My x would do anything to cut off all ch sup in the event of my death. Would my ptnr also b able2 collect ch sup 2 raise them? We hav been 2gether 4 5 yrs.

A:  David's Answer:  You can write a will, which can serve to capture your intent as to who will take care of your children upon your demise. It's not binding, but nevertheless admissible as to your intentions. Your domestic partner would then need to file a custody case upon your demise, alleging your ex either neglected or abandoned the children. Schedule a consult with a Bronx Child Custody attorney for a full assessment.   -- David Bliven, Bronx Child Custody attorney (

I have custody during the week, my ex has 2 out of 3 weekends a month. I have to travel for work and he gets that time.

Q:  Custody was divided as I have school week days and he has one visit a week plus friday to monday two out of three weeks a month. Court felt he could not handle stress of school nights. The judged ordered in the decree that I make every attempt when I have to travel for work to have her stay with him. She has to travel an hour each night and morning to get to school from his place when she does. When I travel I lose that time and he never compromises giving me some of his weekend time. If I travel wed to friday, I don't get to see her until following mon. If he needs to leave on a weekend I know his wife watches her. I try to keep travel to a minimum but its part of the job. Can I go back and adjust? I hardly have any weekend time with her and weekdays are taken up by school.

Additional information
He doesn't travel for work and if he did it would be on the weekdays, which is when she is with me. I've had to travel more than expected for work. She lives with me, an hour away from him but she's never here on the weekends and it's hard for her to see her friends and it works out to about one weekend a month for us. The court felt it was balanced because I got her all week while he had the weekends. But we both work, so I don't see her until 6 every night during the week and she's in school during the day. And when I have to travel he gets those weekdays too. So most of the week he gets her Friday evening to monday morning, then has Tues dinner with her, and then picks her up on Friday. So I only see her Monday, Wed and Thurs and the weekend before my weekend, he also gets a sleepover on Thurs night. I was given residential custody. He was also allowed to pay less than the minimum child support for his travel costs to the city even though he already commuted to the city for work every day.

A:  David's Answer:  I'd agree it's fair that if he needs to travel on a particular weekend, that you'd get rights of first refusal on taking care of the child as opposed to his new wife. The way you'd need to do it is to file a modification petition. Schedule a consult with a NYC Child Custody attorney for a full assessment.    -- David Bliven, Bronx Child Custody attorney (

What can the cops do?

Q:  I have joint custody. He is 11. He never wants to go back to his mothers. He will usually throw a fit and reluctantly go. I tell him he needs to respect his mother and go with her, and then he is mad at me for a day or two... but he knows the drill, he's been doing this since he was 8 months. I hate sending him back, but I do not want to be arrested for 'stopping visitation time'. What happens if he does not want to go back? and refuses to go? If his mom calls the cops to 'enforce' the order, what can happen? I know she will put up a stink because if he chooses to live with me primarily she will lose her support.It isn't about the money, I wouldn't even ask for support if I had legal primary. Hate seeing him mad and confused.

Additional information
do i keep making him go back, create a petition in the meantime, and video/audio record his behavior? Or do I try to come to an agreement with his mother, if nothing comes to an agreement, then go forward with court action?

A:  David's Answer:  If the police determine you're guilty of custodial interference, it's a class A misdemeanor subjecting you to arrest & possible incarceration for up to 1 year. The police can also force a return of the child to the mother. As such, if there's a need to modify the order, it's best to file a petition - if there's an emergency, you can bring the child to court with you & file an order to show cause. Schedule a consult with a NYC Child Custody attorney for more info.   -- David Bliven, Bronx Child Custody attorney (

Can I withdraw my custody petition by letter? If so, will the the judge still make decisions in the case without me there?

Q:  I petitioned the court for custody with my child who lives with the mother. We have been to the initial court appearance and once more after the child met with the child attorney. But I have decided to withdraw my petition all together and I would like to withdraw by letter so I don't miss work. There are no other petitions.

But I'm not sure how it works. Does it stop once I withdraw or will they still be able to make other decisions in the case without me there?

A:  David's Answer:  You can withdraw your petition by sending a letter to the Court to that effect with a notation that a copy was sent to the mother as well. This should be sufficient, unless the mother files a counter-petition. Schedule a consult with a NYC Child Custody attorney for a full assessment.   -- David Bliven, Bronx Child Custody attorney (