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Do You Want Custody of Your Child?


As a seasoned New York family law attorney, mediator, and psychologically trained medical professional, I regularly advise mothers and fathers going through divorce who are considering a custody action.

For those couples who can agree on custody, I help them make amicable custody decisions. For those spouses who cannot agree on custody, I, along with my litigation partner and team of experts, fight for what is in the best interests of the child.

I find parents have a fair amount of misconceptions as to what custody actually means.

From the outset, it’s important to know that custody is not about where the child resides physically. It’s about the right to make major decisions on matters, which includes the child’s residence, education, medical care and religious upbringing.

In my more than 35 years of experience, I’ve witnessed many custody battles that can be vicious, lengthy, excessively expensive and painful for the children.

For parents going through a divorce, if you want to be sure you make the right choice when it comes to your child’s custody – put your child first and consider that there are peaceful methods for settling a child custody dispute.

Consider the following:

1. Mediator: A third party who can help negotiate an acceptable agreement. This is a person who helps spouses communicate but doesn’t make any decisions for them. Someone who can save you time and tens of thousands of dollars. As a psychologically-trained mediator, I have successfully negotiated agreements with legally creative solutions for parents that have been in the best interest of the child and the family. I say, “why fight and spend money over an issue that can be discussed rationally and resolved civilly.”

2. Lawyers Negotiate Out of Court: As straightforward as it sounds, it’s for spouses who tell their attorneys to try to stay out of court. This may be an option when negotiating is possible.

3. Parent Coordinator: This is a relatively new practice used in some states to manage ongoing issues in high-conflict child custody and visitation cases. This is usually performed by a professional psychologist or a social worker assigned by the Court. The coordinator meets with both parents regularly handles questions and complaints, and makes recommendations to the mother and father. These are usually supported by the judge.

There are times when using the court to settle child custody is necessary. But understand judges can make decisions about the future of your children without having all of the facts or a true understanding of the psychological dynamics within your family. This option is often the priciest and most risky.

If you have any questions regarding a peaceful, creative, and less expensive approach to child custody, please call me at 212.734.1551.

All our FREE 1 HOUR CONSULTATIONS are conveniently conducted virtually to reduce risk.

I look forward to helping you make custody decisions that are in the best interest of your child and your family.

Stay healthy and safe!

Warm regards,


New York Divorce lawyer Lois Brenner is offering a free child custody consultation.

Call 212.734.1551

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