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New York Family Law Attorneys: Fighting for You Like Family

Navigating Family Law in New York: A Guide


Going through a divorce can be a difficult time for everyone involved. On top of the stress and tension that comes with co-parenting with a former partner, the legal process can add mounds of paperwork to your already too-busy schedule. With more than 40 years of experience litigating family law cases just like yours, the Spodek Law Group can help minimize conflict and expense as you navigate this process.

New York Family Law

In New York, there are two courts that preside over family law cases: the New York Family Court and the Matrimonial Litigation Division of the New York State Supreme Court. While divorce cases are heard exclusively in the Supreme Court, all other family law cases can be heard in either court.

Cases concerning the following issues are frequently heard in both courts:

  • Child Custody & Visitation
  • Child Support
  • Paternity
  • Spousal Support or Maintenance
  • Family Offense Petitions (Order of Protection)
  • Petition for Abuse & Neglect
  • Guardianship

If you are in need of an attorney that specializes in Family Law, the dedicated team at Spodek Law Group may be able to help.


New York courts recognize several different modes of establishing paternity. This includes methods like DNA testing, Birth Certificates or other forms of admission or documentation. It also includes instances where the child has been introduced in public as your own.

Child Custody

Custody proceedings in New York Family Court focus on identifying what is in the best interest of the children involved in the case. Custody is determined after paternity has been established. Once the court has identified the custodial parent, this is the parent that will be entitled to receive child support.

There are three primary types of child custody arrangements: joint custody, full custody and residential custody. A joint custody arrangement allows both parents to have equal decision making power when it comes to making decisions regarding major issues like education, religion and medical concerns. Full custody allows one parent to make all decisions concerning the child without input or consent from the other parent. In fact, once a parent has been granted full custody of a child, their only obligation to the non-custodial parent is to inform them of major issues and decisions that involve the child. The final type of child custody, residential custody, grants the recipient the right to have the child live with her or him.

Child Support

After paternity and custody have been decided, the next issue will be child support. Child support is paid by the non-custodial parent to the parent that has custody of the children. In most cases, standard child support guidelines will be used to determine the amount of child support. These guidelines are as follows:

  • One child = 17%
  • Two children = 25%
  • Two children = 29%
  • Four children = 31%
  • Five or more children = 22%

Child Visitation

Another important issue to be decided by the family court is child visitation for the non-custodial parent. A standard visitation agreement typically consists of visitation every other weekend, 4 weeks vacation and alternating holidays. In many cases, judges are willing to be more flexible with visitation when they believe a good parent is seeking extra time with their child. The courts believe it is in the best interest of the children to have both parents actively involved in their lives.

As seasoned family law attorneys, the Spodek Law Group understands that your children come first. Our team does everything possible to ensure that their best interests are protected throughout the legal process. If you are ready to start the next chapter in your life, our legal team can help you establish a solid foundation for the future.

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