do Child Custody and Child Support Laws Come From?
ask all the time, where do child custody and child support laws come from? Are
the laws in each state completely different? Are these laws even
constitutional? Let’s find out.
law in the United States comes from several sources. Primarily, family law is a
state affair and much of the laws governing child custody and child support are
state statutory law. These laws are found in each states’ codified statutes
and/or codes. In New Mexico, we have Chapter 40 of the New Mexico Statutes
Guarantee that You Won’t be the Custodial Parent
Before you read any further, I realize what I’m about to
present is plain common sense. I’m not trying to insult your intelligence but
you would be utterly surprised at the number of times intelligent people do
rather dumb things when it comes to their personal lives and especially when a
court hearing is on the calendar. So I am going to take a different approach
because some folks benefit more from hearing what they shouldn’t do rather than
what they should do.
“Secrets” to Getting the Custody Arrangement You Want
As a child
custody attorney in New Mexico, I’ve heard it all. “Dad is always at least 20
minutes late picking up the kids.” Or “My ex won’t let me have any say in what
happens to our girls.” Or, “I want 50-50 custody because it’s not fair that she
should have the kids all the time.”
If a lawyer
tells you that they can solve these problems instantly, run. The truth is, if
you want 50-50 custody, or if you have a difficult ex who refuses to cooperate,
there are powerful steps you can take to break past the impasse.
New Mexico recognizes marriage between same-sex people. Our New Mexico Supreme Court "legalized" same-sex marriage in December of 2013.SeeGriego v. Oliver.
The Court said in an unanimous decision that it is unconstitutional to deny marriage licenses to gay and lesbian couples.
"We hold that the State of New Mexico is constitutionally required to allow same-gender couples to marry and must extend to them the rights, protections, and responsibilities that derive from civil marriage under New Mexico law," Justice Edward L.
There are three conditions where grandparents can petition the Children's Court for custody of their grandkids. The New Mexico Grandparents Visitation Privileges Act provides the following scenarios:
We discussed one of those scenarios in our November 28, 2014 installment. That article focused on the Kinship-Guardianship process whereby grandparents can petition for custody and guardianship for their grandchildren in cases where the biological parents have left the children with grandma and grandpa for an extended period of time and with no real end in sight.
What do you do when the "baby's momma" doesn't want to let you have visitation? I get this question a lot from guys who are dads but aren't married to the mother of their child(ren). In fact, I was just in Court dealing with this common situation just yesterday.
Oftentimes couples believe they can work things out without formalizing anything. I will ask a client if they have an actual parenting plan drawn up with the other parent. Most times they do not. People simply assume they have inherit parenting rights.
Child Custody Part 1
The Holidays seem to bring out the questions in people and a
couple of folks have asked about their rights as grandparents when it comes to
physical custody of their grandchildren. Sometimes children are left with grandparents,
aunts and uncles, or other family members by the child’s parent for one reason
or another. And usually this is done in the best interests of the child or
children. What do you do when a weekend
becomes six months and mom or dad are nowhere in sight?
The Best Interests of
the Child Standard
The underlying goal for any children’s court judge or family
court judge is to determine what’s in the best interest of the child or
children. They do this in every child custody decision, every child support
determination, and in CYFD abuse and neglect cases. Parents believe their
ideas, goals, and plans are in their child’s best interests. Lawyers draft
motions and advocate for what they believe is in the best interests of
child-client or in the best interests of their clients’ children.
I represent many people including children in child abuse and neglect cases. These cases have increased dramatically in recent years and the television news and newspapers publicize many of these cases. Because these cases are very unique in terms of the law and rules governing them, most people simply are not familiar with the nuances of the law including most lawyers.
The custody hearing which is the first legal proceeding held at the initiation of the abuse and neglect case. This hearing must be held within ten days of CYFD filing an ex parte order and taking a child or children into custody.
This week I had a young client ask me the details of emancipation which means basically becoming an "adult" in the eyes of the law. As everyone knows, the law of majority in New Mexico is 18. Yet there are some circumstances in which a teen can become a legal adult before reaching their 18th birthday. Here's what New Mexico law says:
A child can become emancipated once the child reaches the age of 16 and meets one of the following requirements: validly married, or on active military duty, or been declared "emancipated" by the district court.