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An Historical Perspective of Mother’s Custody Rights Concerning Their Children – Part I

parental rights attorneyHistorically, courts favored giving custody of young children to mothers. There were several doctrines which were utilized as the basis to support giving mothers custody of young children. This doctrine was known as either the “tender years doctrine” or the “maternal preference doctrine”. The basis for this legal theory favored giving mothers custody of young children because it was in the children’s best interests to be raised by their mother. Research eventually showed children benefited by having both parents involved in raising them.

Gender Neutral Custody Laws

The “maternal preference” and “tender years doctrine” theories were eventually replaced by laws which provided no gender preference with regard to who would raise the children. Father’s rights lawyers have maintained, however, even though the laws have changed and there is no longer a preference for mothers to have custody of young children, the laws are not fairly enforced by the courts. They claim the courts still favor mothers with regard to custody matters, and the statistics as to who gets custody of young children supports these claims.

Children’s Best Interests

The courts in New York decide who receives custody of children based on what is in the children’s best interests. The courts look into each of the parent’s interactions with the children. Parents who nurture children and who are involved in their children’s lives on a regular basis are viewed more favorably by courts than parents who are only sporadically involved in their children’s lives. Mothers seeking custody of their children should be involved in their children’s lives on a day to day basis. The best way for mothers to prepare for custody legal battles is to consult with attorneys who are experienced in litigating cases involving mother’s rights and have had a successful track record of obtaining custody for mothers.mother's rights attorney

‘Genius’ Not Taken Into Account in Equitable Distribution

divorce-150x150Judge Dregger, sitting in Manhattan Supreme Court, denied a very successful private equity firm executive from presenting evidence in a divorce case that he had “unique personality traits” prior to the marriage that allowed him to accumulate 450 million dollars in business assets during the thirty year term of his marriage. Justice Dregger, in her decision, stated that “in purporting to prove that the success of the business is solely attributable to his innate genius, the expert opinion evidence offered by the husband provides no assistance to the finder of fact in fashioning an equitable distribution of the estate based on the contributions of each party to the marital partnership.” Mr. and Mrs. Silverman were married for more than thirty years prior to a divorce lawsuit being brought. They had married in January of 1978.

Innate Talents

Mr. Silverman claimed that he had unique innate talents that allowed him to be successful in this business. Mr. Silverman argued that his talents in business should be considered in determining equitable distribution. Justice Dregger stated that intangible assets may be considered as marital property, referring to the enhanced earning capacity of an investment banker, someone with celebrity status or someone involved in a political career. However, she stated the question is “to what degree the spouse not possessed of the intangible asset was entitled to a distributive aware arising from the enhanced earning capacity of the career developed during the marriage and not the degree of fame, skill or political acumen possessed at the time of the marriage.”

Henry Silverman is out of luck. The 450 million dollars he amassed is subject to equitable distribution with his wife. I’m sure he’ll end up with enough money to prevent himself from starving.

New York and Long Island Divorce Lawyer

The Law Offices of Schlissel DeCorpo have been handling divorces in the Metropolitan New York area for over thirty-three years. We litigate all aspects of divorce related proceedings in the Supreme Court and Family Court. These proceedings involve divorce grounds, no fault divorce, child custody, mothers’ rights, fathers’ rights, child support, downward modification of child support, spousal maintenance (alimony) and domestic violence issues. In addition, we negotiate separation agreements, prenuptial agreementsand post-nuptial agreements for our clients. We litigate equitable distribution issues involving doctor, dentist and lawyer licenses. Call us for a free consultation.

Mother Seeks to Keep Children Away From Killer

mother-150x150In 1991, Kristine Cushing killed her four and eight year old daughters. She was tried for these murders and found not guilty by reason of insanity. Her defense counsel claimed that she murdered her children due to a bad reaction to Prozac. Kristine spent four years in a mental institution. In addition, she had ten years of psychiatric monitoring. She received an unconditional release in 2005 from the State of California.

Kristine Cushing has now moved back in with her former husband, John P. Cushing. John had two children with Theresa Conlin. Their sons are 13 and 14 years of age. The 13 year old lives with Mr. Cushing. Since Theresa Conlin has moved back in with Mr. Cushing, he also lives with a convicted murderer, who murdered her two children. This does not sit well with the 13 year old boy’s mother, Trisha Conlin.

Theresa Goes to Court in California

Theresa has brought a proceeding in the King County Superior Court to prevent her sons from spending time alone with a convicted murderer. Mr. Cushing originally lied to Theresa. He advised her that he was not living with his ex-wife.

In the court proceedings, Mr. Cushing’s attorney stated that Miss Cushing was temporarily insane and didn’t know what she was doing. They are taking a position that she has recovered from this temporary insanity and presents no immediate threat to children.

In June, Miss Conlin received a court order giving her full custody of both of her sons for a period of 30 days. The court advised her that she would have to make a showing on the next court date why this new parenting plan should become permanent. She is still dropping off her sons to spend time with the Cushings on Sundays. Query: Should an ex-murderer be allowed to be alone with children?

Family Law Lawyer for Mothers’ Rights and Fathers’ Rights

Mothers and fathers have rights when dealing with issues concerning their children. Children should be kept in a safe environment. They should not be subject to child abuse or neglect.

The Law Offices of Schlissel DeCorpo have been representing parents in matrimonial and family law matters for more than 30 years. We have developed an expertise in dealing with divorce, orders of protection, child custody and visitation. We litigate changing child custody, child support, spousal maintenance (alimony) and issues involving paternity. We also negotiate prenuptial and post nuptial agreements on behalf of our clients. We are especially adept in dealing with parental alienation issues and parental alienation syndrome. Call us for a free consultation.

Divorce Rates For Women In the Military

Divorce rates for women in the military is double the divorce rate for men in the military. Approximately 8% of the women in the Armed Services of the United States obtained a divorce in 2010.  Only 3% of the men in the military were divorced in that year.  Dr. Benjamin Carney, a psychology professor at UCLA, conducted a study of divorce rates among military families between 1996 and 2005. This study showed that divorce rates for women in the military were 2 to 3 times higher than divorce rates for men.  Dr. Carney has two theories as to why the divorce rates for women are higher.  First is that the Armed Services are designed for military families that have civilian wives.  The Armed Services is not designed to deal with families where the husband is the civilian.  Marriages between men, who are in civilian life and women who have military careers have the highest  potential of ending in a divorce.  Men who have chosen military careers have civilian wives in 90% of the marriages.  However, women in the military have a majority of spouses that are also in the military service. Professor Carney also sees gender role reversals as an additional reason for the disparity between the divorce rates for men and women in the Armed Services.

Conclusion: If the Armed Services is going to be a more attractive place for women, action must be taken to help them maintain and keep their marriages going.

New York and Long Island Divorce Lawyers

The Law Offices of Schlissel DeCorpo handles all types of divorces. We represent individuals in the service as well as men and women in civilian life. We litigate divorce issues involving divorce grounds and family law related matters. We represent our clients concerning orders of protection, child custody, child abuse and child neglect matters. We negotiate separation agreements, pre nuptial and post nuptial agreements on behalf of our clients. We litigate issues involving mother’s rights and father’s rights. We help our clients deal with the division of property in divorces and we also work towards amicable resolution of divorce issues. Feel free to call us for a free consultation

Getting Divorced During an Economic Downturn

divorce-150x1502The financial crisis in the United States is causing tension within families. Financial problems can be the cause of a divorce. In most marriages the family home is the largest asset. The decline in home values over the past three or four years has resulted in many homes being worth less than the mortgages on them.

Postponing Divorce

Recent studies have shown that nearly a third of all couples who considered divorce have postponed their divorce plans due to financial problems.

Divorce and Real Estate Issues

What do you do with the house in the divorce? Who stays in the house? Who is responsible for paying the bills on the house? These are significant issues that must be dealt with.

Living Together Until Financial Problems Can Be Dealt With

One choice for couples who don’t get along is to continue living together, but not as man and wife. These couples live together with the hope that their financial situation will improve and they will be able to sell their home and get their equity out of it. However, there is no sign the real estate market is improving throughout the majority of the United States. Furthermore, there is always a question as to whether living with someone you don’t get along with creates a negative environment for the children or will result in domestic violence.

Are the Mortgage Payments Behind?

If the mortgage payments are behind, the unhappy couple will eventually be receiving a foreclosure notice. Is it better to sell the house now or wait until it’s sold in foreclosure?

Modern Divorce

Divorce can be a contentious issue or it can be negotiated. The best solution for couples that don’t get along is for them to sit down with attorneys and negotiate in a mature, amicable manner, in either a divorce settlement or separation agreement. This will help avoid the acrimony and high cost of litigation.

New York and Long Island Divorce Lawyer

The Law Offices of Schlissel DeCorpo have been handling divorces in the Metropolitan New York area for over 33 years. We litigate all aspects of divorce related proceedings in the Supreme Court and Family Court. These proceedings involve divorce grounds, no fault divorce, child custody, mothers’ rights, fathers’ rights, child support, downward modification of child support, spousal maintenance (alimony)and domestic violence issues. In addition, we negotiate separation agreements, prenuptial agreementsand post-nuptial agreements for our clients. We litigate equitable distribution issues involving doctor, dentist and lawyer licenses. Call us for a free consultation.

3,250 Collective Years of Marriage

marriage-150x1501A vow renewal ceremony was held at Harbor Links Golf Course in Port Washington, New York, to celebrate Valentine’s Day. The event marked the fourth time Rose and Nick Capobianco, both 89 years of age, had renewed their wedding vows. Rose and Nick have celebrated 68 anniversaries of their marriage. They have renewed their vows on the 25th, 50th and 60th anniversaries of their marriage.

Sixty-Five Couples Renew Their Wedding Vows

There were sixty-five couples, representing 3,250 years of marriage, attending the marriage renewal ceremony. Town of North Hempstead Clerk, Leslie Gross, stated “today each couple stands before us reaffirming a commitment that has withstood the test of time.”

Fifty Percent of Marriages End in Divorce

At a time when approximately half of the marriages entered into in the State of New York end in divorce, it is refreshing to hear about successful marriages. The family structure is enhanced by successful marriages.  My parents are in their late 80’s and they have been married 65 years. Bravo for them!

New York Divorce Lawyers

I salute the fifty percent of the people who are married who never get divorced. But for the people who do get divorced, I can help them. My law office litigates divorce proceedings. We represent clients concerning child custody, child abuse and child neglect proceedings. We help our clients negotiate separation agreements when their break-ups are amicable. In marriages of short duration, we obtain annulments for our clients.

We litigate fathers’ rights issues, as well as mothers’ rights issues. We also draft pre-nuptial and post-nuptial agreements. Should you have questions concerning matrimonial or family court issues, feel free to call us for a consultation.

Task Force Created to Investigate Family Courts

FamilyCourt-150x150Steven P. Younger, Esq., the president of the New York State Bar Association, has recently formed a task force to look into the numerous problems and difficulties facing the Family Courts in the state of New York.

President Younger has put together individuals with expertise in diverse areas for the purpose of conducting a study as to how to deal with current and future difficulties facing the Family Courts. The Family Court Task Force will examine numerous issues for the purpose of coming up with solutions as to how to improve the operation of the Family Courts in New York. The following is a list of some of the issues that will be explored by this new task force:

1. Are additional resources required for the Family Court? If so, what resources?

2. How can the staff in the Family Court be best utilized?

3. Are there new technologies and/or efficiencies in the market place that will assist the Family Court?

4. What can be done to improve the level of service provided by the Family Court for the individuals who appear in these courts?

President Younger stated, “There may be no place where shaping the future and restoring confidence in our governmental institutions comes together as clearly as in our Family Court system. To thousands of New Yorkers, Family Courts are the face of our legal system; but, unfortunately, with over-crowded dockets, too few judges, and far too many delays, these courts resemble hospital emergency rooms and our family law attorneys are forced to perform triage.”

The Family Courts deal with “bread and butter” family issues. Child support, child abuse and domestic violence are the types of cases the Family Courts see every day. There were 4,000 filings for every judge sitting in the Family Courts in New York State.

How can one person handle so many cases in a year? The area of the state with the greatest problems presented in the Family Court lies within the city of New York. There have been no new judgeships created in the city of New York since 1991. Since then, the amount of filings in the Family Court have gone from 206,000 to 253,000. In a state-wide basis, there were more than 750,000 Family Court proceedings brought last year.

We don’t need a commission to determine what’s wrong with the Family Courts. We need more judges and more personnel. The state needs to spend more money dealing with family issues.

The Law Offices of Schlissel DeCorpo

Our law firm represents men, women and children regarding matrimonial and family issues in the Family Courts and the Supreme Courts in New York State. We protect mothers’ rights, fathers’ rights and families’ rights. We handle divorce, custody, paternity and equitable distribution issues. If you have questions on these issues, feel free to contact us for a free consultation at 1-800-344-6431, 516-561-6645 or 718-350-2802.

Prenuptial Agreement between American Male and French Woman

divorce1-150x1503Judge Kaplan, sitting in the Southern District of New York (a federal court), was recently presented with an issue as to whether the United States or France should interpret the terms of a prenuptial agreement. The wife in this situation was a citizen of France. The husband was a citizen of the United States. They had entered into a prenuptial agreement and were married in the United States on January 10, 2004.

A divorce action was subsequently brought in the courts in France by the husband. Thereafter, the husband (the American citizen) brought a second divorce action in the state of New York. In his divorce action, he asked the State of New York to render a decision with regard to each parties’ rights under the prenuptial agreement they had entered into prior to the marriage. The case was eventually removed from the New York State courts and was heard before the United States District Court by Judge Kaplan, sitting in the Southern District of New York. The wife requested that the lawsuit be dismissed on the basis of forum nonconvenience grounds because the matter was already pending in France.

Judge Kaplan rendered a decision that the case should be handled by the courts in France. He therefore dismissed the case brought in the Southern District of New York. In his decision, he stated that the French courts could resolve all of the disputes concerning the prenuptial agreement. Since the lawsuit in France was originally brought by the husband – an American citizen – this acted as an acknowledgment that the French court was the appropriate forum to decide all issues involving prenuptial agreements. The court also stated that there was no local public interest that was necessary to adjudicate in the court located in the Southern District of New York.

About Our Firm
Our office has extensive experience in drafting prenuptial and postnuptial agreements on behalf of our clients. In these agreements, we protect both mothers’ rights and fathers’ rights in divorces and Family Court proceedings. We also litigate custody and visitation proceedings in the Supreme Court and the Family Court.
We also assist our clients in cases where the appropriate remedy to deal with their marital problems is to have the marriage annulled. Our office is also handling numerous cases related to the new New York no fault divorce law. Feel free to contact us. You can reach us at 1-800-344-6431, 516-561-6645 or 718-350-2802.

Is Marriage Becoming Obsolete?

marry-150x150A recent study found that four out of ten Americans think marriage is obsolete.  This same study also showed that attitudes have been changing concerning gay relationships and gay marriage.  Today, an unwed couple can be the definition of a family situation.

Since the 1970’s, there has been a significant increase in the number of Americans who believe the institution of marriage is becoming obsolete.  In 1978, only 28% of Americans questioned by Time Magazine believed that marriage was becoming obsolete.  Today, that number has climbed to 39%.

Although marriage is becoming less popular in the United States, various attitudes reflect different racial, social and ethnic groups regarding the institution of marriage and are reflected in a survey conducted by Pew Research Center and Time Magazine.  The gap between marriage rates for college graduates and individuals with only a high school education is growing larger.  In 1960, the gap was only 4%.  Today, the gap is 16%.  Among college graduates, 64% now marry, as compared with 48% of individuals with only high school educations.  The reason the less educated Americans are marrying less often has to do with financial issues.

The study conducted by the Pew Research Center and Time Magazine also showed that 86% of respondents consider a single parent and a child to be a family.  If marriage rates go down, then divorce rates should go down.  Unfortunately, that is not the case. The divorce rate in most states in the United States is approximately 50%.

About our Firm: New York and Long Island Divorce Lawyers

The Law Offices of Schlissel DeCorpo have been handling divorces for men and women in the Metropolitan New York area for more than thirty years.  Our firm litigates all aspects of divorce proceedings, including child custody, visitation, division of property, fathers’ rights, mothers’ rights, and all issues concerning orders of protection.  If we can be of assistance to you, feel free to call us at 1-800-344-6431, 516-561-6645 or 718-350-2802.

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