Stephen K. Underwood, Attorney at Law

Category: "Family Law"


  06:23:00 pm, by admin   , 307 words  
Categories: Family Law

Burden of Proof | Child Custody NY | Buffalo NY Family Court Lawyer

How to Prove a Child Custody Case, Custody Lawyer Buffalo NY

What is the burden of proof in the initial custody case?

A parent must show that it is in the "best interest of the child" for them to have custody.

What factors does the court consider in determining the best interest of the child?

1) Domestic violence is a significant factor;
2) Who is the primary caretaker of the child;
3) Who is the more fit parent;
4) What is the nurturing ability of the parents;
5) Who has better judgment;
6) The desirability of keeping siblings together;
7) The wishes of the child; if of sufficient age;
8) The parents' lifestyles;
9) The parents' religion;
10) Whether a parent will encourage or discourage visitation;
11) Continuity of a stable environment;
12) The age of the child;
13) Substance abuse or chemical addiction of a parent;
14) The quality of each parents' home environment;
15) The parental guidance each parent provides for the child;
16) The ability of each parent to provide for the child's emotional and intellectual development;
17) The financial status and ability of each parent to provide for the child;
18) The relative fitness of the respective parents including their mental condition;
19) The length of time the present custody arrangement has been in effect;
20) A parents' sexual behavior; character or lifestyle (only if it directly affects the child).

Does either parent have a better chance of getting custody under the law?

Not in the initial custody case, however the parent who first obtained custody has a better chance of retaining custody unless the non-custodial parent can prove a substantial change in circumstances that warrants a change in custody.

Need a Family Law Lawyer?

If you need a Family Law Lawyer please call (716)-656-7676 for a free phone counsultation or CLICK HERE for a free web consultation. The first consultation is always free, and you will always speak directly to Stephen K. Underwood.


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