If the original order was created in Supreme Court pursuant to a divorce filing, then the parties have the option of either going back to Supreme Court or filing in family court for the custody modification. If the custody or visitation is the only issue you are bringing back to court, you are probably better off going to family court than to Supreme Court. Supreme Court is better set up to consider multiple issues at once. If there are intertwined issues of custody and visitation but also child support and property distributions, all of that can be lumped together in a Supreme Court filing. If there is only one issue going on and that is the custody or visitation aspect, then you are better off just going to family court.
How Does The Petitioning Party Prove A Substantial Change Of Circumstances When Requesting A Modification To A Child Custody Order In New York?
A change of circumstances is proven in a similar way that the original custody determination would be proven: with evidence. I advise potential clients to keep a very careful paper trail. If it is the non-custodial parent and they were deprived visitation, they need to keep a paper trail of the missed or cancelled visits. I recommend creating evidence through emails or text messages with the other parent, documenting every time your visitation was denied. The other parent may ignore that correspondence but it will seem relatively unbelievable to a Judge that the person is never getting any of your text messages or emails. One can also use programs such as “Our Family Wizard” or “2 Houses” to document communications with the other parent (indeed, such programs are often better at organizing such communications than mere text/e-mail chains).
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