Child Custody & Visitation: What Rights Does a Father Have in New York?

One of the worst parts of a divorce is the impact it can have on a divorcing couple’s children. In some cases, the relationship between kids and their parents can change drastically. This is especially true depending on the custody situation. If one parent has sole custody, that parent has a better opportunity to have a healthy relationship with their kids than a parent who only has visitation rights. Unfortunately, visitation rights are all many parents have, and while it’s better than nothing, it’s no match for time parents with sole or joint custody have with their kids.

In New York, until recent years, custody battles often favored the mother. In many cases, securing visitation rights was the best outcome a father could hope to obtain from a custody dispute. However, times have changed, and parental rights in New York are much less skewed in favor of mothers these days.

How Do Parental Rights Work in New York?

The laws regarding parental rights vary from state to state. In New York, there are four types of child custody:

  • Legal Custody – This type of custody concerns which parent (if not both) has final authority on important choices regarding the children, such as decisions involving religion, medical issues, and education.
  • Physical Custody – When a parent has physical custody, that means the children live with that parent. The other parent can have visitation rights in this circumstance.
  • Joint Custody – When parents share custody of the children, it is known as joint custody. In this instance, the children split time with the parents based on a schedule agreed upon by the parents or decided by the court.
  • Sole Custody – This is when one parent has full custody of the children.

Do Mothers Have an Advantage in Custody Battles?

As stated before, in the past, the court tended to favor mothers in custody battles. However, that is no longer the case. The key determining factor in deciding child custody in New York is what is in the child’s best interests. Deciding what is in the best interests of children enmeshed in child custody disputes generally involves considering the following:

  • A parent’s financial situation
  • A parent’s living situation
  • A parent’s mental and physical health
  • A parent’s ability to make childcare arrangements
  • A parent’s employment status and work schedule
  • A parent’s parenting and co-parenting ability

Child custody decisions, especially if both parents are on fairly equal footing, can often come down to a few details. An experienced child custody attorney can help a parent determine their case’s strengths and weaknesses, and what they need to do to get the edge in their custody battle.

Schedule a Free Consultation with Our Experienced Child Custody Lawyers

Children’s relationships with their parents (or lack thereof) can have a long-lasting impact on their lives, affecting the kind of person they are as an adult and how they parent their kids someday. Far too often fathers are absent from their children’s lives. In some cases, the fathers choose to leave, but in many cases, they are denied access to their kids even though they want to be a part of their children’s lives more than anything.

At Levi Divorce & Family Law Attorneys, we respect a father’s right to be a part of his children’s lives. We understand that in the past courts have often favored mothers during child custody disputes. Fortunately, things are getting better, and fathers are on more equal terms in the eyes of the court and can expect to be treated fairly during custody battles. Still, we don’t take any chances when it comes to helping our clients fight for custody of their children or visitation rights. We fight for our clients like we’d fight for ourselves in the same situation. We know what it takes to secure custody or visitation rights, and we have a history of getting the job done.

To learn more about what it’s like to have us fighting for you, check out our clients’ reviews.

Need help with a child custody dispute? Get in touch with us online or call us at (718) 215-0121 to schedule a free, confidential consultation with our experienced child custody lawyers. We’re available 24/7 to take your call.