Disputes involving family issues are grueling, particularly when they involve child custody, paternity, visitation, and support. You may be having a hard time making decisions or reaching resolutions with your partner, family member or ex-spouse. The Law Office of Laurence S. Margolin is well-versed in all aspects of family law including paternity, father’s rights, grandparents’ rights, child support, custody, move-aways, visitation, arrears, modification of prior orders, enforcement proceedings and grandparents’ rights, orders of protection. The current divorce rate is increasing at an astounding rate. At the Law Office of Laurence S. Margolin our goal to help our clients fight for their rights as parents and fight for the benefit of minor children.
We help you establish a custody arrangement that is fair to you and to make sure your children grow up in a stable and nurturing environment.
Child custody may be agreed upon by the parents through negotiation, or it may be decided by a court. In the event the parties are unable to reach agreement on a custodial arrangement, the court will generally appoint an attorney for the children. If the parties remain unable to decide on the best custodial arrangement for the family, counsel may seek psychological evaluation (forensics) of the parties.
If you are awarded sole or primary custody, we will help you get the child support payments from the monied spouse. If you are the parent paying child support, we will help make sure the payments are fair and reasonable.
Child support is an amount that the non-custodial parent pays to the custodial parent for the care, maintenance and education of the parties' un-emancipated Children under the age of 21. The amount of child support is determined either by a court order or an agreement between the parties. Generally, children are emancipated at the age of 21, however, a minor child may also become emancipated upon marriage, enlistment in the armed services, or by becoming self-supporting.
We represent dependent spouses in need of spousal support in order to continue to live comfortably, as well as supporting spouses who want to avoid paying alimony or pay only what’s absolutely necessary.
Spousal maintenance (also known as alimony or spousal support) refers to payments made from one spouse to the other that are established in certain amounts generally based on ability to pay and the standard of living of the parties established during the marriage. Spousal maintenance may be set in a binding agreement between the parties—such as a marital stipulation, separation agreement, prenuptial or post nuptial agreement—or awarded by the court. Payments may be required for a specific duration or when the parties are older and have a long marriage, for the spouse’s lifetime. Generally, spousal maintenance is terminated upon the death of either party or upon the spouse receiving the maintenance getting remarried or cohabitating with another partner and holding him or herself out as husband and wife.
When you enter into a stipulation of settlement in your divorce or separation agreement, the Agreement and Order will provide the terms pertaining to:
Should your ex-spouse violate the Agreement as ordered by the Court, we can help you to enforce the Agreement, fight for your rights and get your spouse to comply with the terms of the Agreement. We understand that you are frustrated and upset that your spouse may not be complying with a stipulation of settlement and you may be reluctant to go back to Court. We can stand up for your rights and navigate through the court process.
Once a child support or spousal maintenance order or agreement is in place, the payment amount may be increased or decreased under certain circumstances. Courts will require a substantial and significant change in circumstances to consider granting a modification of child support or spousal maintenance obligations.
These substantial changes to either you or you ex-spouse may include:
These substantial changes to your child may include:
To get a modification you will need an experienced attorney to evaluate your options and determine the best way to proceed. You will need the Court to issue an official order modifying the payments. We will try to work out a new payment amount with your ex-spouse. If an agreement can be reached, we can take the agreement to the Court and request a new order.
When families split up due to separation, divorce, the death of one or both parents, incarceration, or when the custodial parents are not able to raise their child(ren) or provide for their emotional, physical, medical and educational needs, due to drug or alcohol abuse, physical abuse, sexual abuse, neglect, mental illness, or other circumstances, grandparents can seek visitation with grandchildren or even custody.
If you are a grandparent who is seeking custody of your grandchild or would like to seek visitation rights in regards to your grandchild, we can evaluate your particular situation and the circumstances of your custody or visitation issue in order to determine whether you may be able to get custody or visitation.
New York State law does not have a statute that provides for grandparents’ rights to access to their grandchildren. Under the proper circumstances, for example, if at least one of the grandchild’s parents is deceased or the child is not living with either parent or if the Court finds that equity demands intervention based on the circumstances of the case and it is in the grandchild’s best interest, grandparents may be granted visitation rights. The Court will evaluate if you as grandparent have a strong pre-existing relationship with your grandchild, for example, the grandchild lived with you for significant time, or you raised the grandchild, or you were significantly involved in your grandchild’s life, and if you have the financial ability and good health to take care of your grandchild.
Flex or "Unbundled" Representation and can be handled for a flat-fee or you can retain an attorney on a limited basis for a reduced hourly rate.
The Law Office of Laurence S. Margolin is pleased to be among a hand full of leading legal firms pioneering this unique approach. It is “unbundled” because it is for those who need certain legal services but either can’t afford or do not want full comprehensive legal representation.
The Law Office of Laurence S. Margolin can help you by preparing legal documents and court filings based on your individual situation for a reduced hourly fee or a fixed fee. At your consultation, we can answer any questions you may have about whether unbundled services are right for your situation. However, if you believe you can handle your own family law matter but would like advice and guidance or our Firm’s assistance to complete court forms, you can keep your legal costs down.
Some examples of Unbundled Legal Services offered by the firm include:
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