My name is Paul Matthews (A.K.A. “Family Lawyer NYC”). I am a top rated and affordable divorce and family law attorney, conveniently located here in New York City.
I opened my law office in downtown Manhattan in 1996, specializing in family law trials and appeals.
To date, I have tried over 500 cases. I have also prosecuted or defended over a dozen appeals, and have successfully filed over a hundred uncontested divorce cases.
I believe that attorney fees in New York State, and particularly in New York City, have become way too high.
I charge only $200 an hour for all Family Court cases, including child support, child custody cases, and all Family Court appeals.
Like all reputable attorneys, I do require an up front retainer fee for all contested cases.
The amount of this retainer depends on a number of things, including the type of case, the complexity and difficulty of the case, whether the issues of law are simple or complex, and who the adversary is.
I consider my word, my integrity, and my reputation as my most important assets.
My law practice enjoys a rating of A+ with the Better Business Bureau, and I myself enjoy the highest rating of “10-Superb” with AVVO, the most well known attorney rating service.
I offer a free initial telephone or skype consultation on all New York City cases except for contested divorces. Contact me today at (347) 461-0760. I may have solutions to your problems. For your New Jersey family law matter I recommend this New Jersey divorce lawyer https://thecarlinlawgroup.com.
Experienced family lawyer- Over 500 family court trials
At the present time, my practice focuses on Family Law Matters. Family Law is a specialty practice which includes:
- Child support
- Child custody
- Orders of protection (domestic violence cases)
(if a child is involved, he case usually is considered to be a family law case). In New York State, except for Divorce cases, which are only heard in the Supreme Court, the majority of these cases are heard in the Family Court
Child support cases
Child Support cases in New York can be very tricky and complicated.
Unless you are a w-2 wage earner with a full time job and no overtime, you likely need legal advice and legal assistance from an experienced family law attorney for your child support case.
Even then, if your income is either high or very low, you may still need legal help.
What is frustrating for me about child support cases is that the client often thinks he or she can do a child support case without the assistance of legal counsel, and only contacts me to ask me for help after the trial is over.
While it is true that New York Courts often apply a formula to calculate the amount of child support, in high income cases they have a lot of flexibility based upon a number of factors, including the needs of the child. There are also special rules about paying for private schools and college expenses.
I have found that when the petitioner (usually the mother) does not have an attorney the support magistrate may sometimes, but not always, help her with her case, but support magistrates rarely help a respondent (usually the father) without a lawyer, especially when the respondent is trying to reduce a prior child support order.
While it is sometimes possible to fix a botched child support trial, it is almost always very difficult to do so.
After having years of family law and litigation experience, I have come to be known as one of the experts in all types of New York child support cases, including interstate cases and high net worth cases. If you are looking for representation call me today at (347) 461-0760
Child custody cases in New York
If you are one of the many parents who faces a contested child custody case, you are probably in for the most important case of your life, and potentially the nastiest and most stressful case of your life. You should therefore try to hire a family law attorney who has done a large number of New York child custody trials.
It is usually better to come to an agreement with the other parent, but sometimes this is not possible. There are lawyers and social workers who have divorce and custody mediation practices, who can resolve issues of child custody and visitation for much less than the cost of a contested divorce or a contested child custody trial.
If mediation results in a proposed agreement, you will still need your own attorney to look the agreement over and advise you as to you rights under New York state law, and whether or not the agreement is fair. He or she should be able to answer any questions you may still have.
If you are the victim of domestic violence or other abuse by your spouse or former partner, you should think long and hard about agreeing to joint legal custody. An order of “joint legal custody” where you only have to consul with the other parent via text or email, but where you have the final decision making power can work, and is a common resolution to the problem of resolving custody with an abusive spouses or ex partner.
While in most states there is a presumption inn the law in favor of joint custody, in New York state there is almost a presumption against it. The logic is that if the parties are hostile towards one another, no matter what the reason, they will be unable to make joint decisions about the welfare of a child or children. It is extremely rare for a judge to order joint custody over the objection of either party, although agreements for joint custody are common where the mother and father do get along well.
While New York state has been criticized as being backward about family law matters (It was the last state to allow no fault divorces), New York is a leader in protecting victims of domestic violence, and while divorce courts and family courts are allowed to take any factor in consideration in deciding custody and visitation cases, by statute they are required to consider proven instances of domestic violence.
The New York State family court
The New York Family Court is unique in that it has its own customs, practices, and procedures.
While the Family Court cannot do divorces or resolve issues of dividing property and other assets between couples in a marriage or unmarried parents of a child or children, they can and do grant paternity orders, make orders for child support, grant orders of protection, decide issues of custody and visitation, and also can do adoptions, including step parent adoptions.
The Family court can also enforce orders of maintenance (often called alimony) which have already been granted pursuant to a divorce.
While most people believe that the law is the law no matter what type of case, there are special statutes that govern Family Law cases, and over the years a whole body of case law has evolved in New York which apply the law differently to Family Court cases, especially when a child is involved.
When the welfare and/or custody of a child is at stake, the court usually take a much more active role than it does in other types of cases not involving a child or children.
The court may order investigations by the City Child Welfare Agency, may interview the child or children in chambers, and may refuse to sign off on settlements that it believes is not in the best interests of the child or children involved. Family court cases are also different in that the court will often assign family law attorneys to a child or children.
Attorneys who believe that just because they are experienced handling other types of cases in other courts that they can serve clients well in the Family Court on a custody or child support case are usually mistaken. You would probably be better served by finding a family law attorney or family law firm with special expertise in the Family Court.
Because all families are different, a seasoned family law attorney will take the time to sit down with you and try to get a clear understanding of your particular situation and will explain the process to you.
New York uncontested divorce contact me today at (347) 461-0760
Because the only divorces that I presently handle are uncontested cases, the majority of my divorce clients are on the young side.
Most have only been married for a relatively short time, and usually have no significant issues regarding division of property, such as homes, pensions, automobiles, substantial bank accounts, etc. These clients are primarily focused on getting divorced as quickly as possible with a minimum of expense, stress, and aggravation.
However there may be some issues, such as pensions or retirement funds, that must be dealt with correctly in order to protect the client’s interests, even in uncontested divorce cases.
If your divorce involves a minor child or minor children (which includes “children” between 18 and 21), it is still possible to get a low cost uncontested divorce, provided that you and your spouse have figured out all of the issues in the divorce, including who is going to get custody of the child or children, and how much child support will be paid.