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What Are the Child’s Rights in a Long Island Divorce?

by | Sep 7, 2021 | News and Events

Since children are often the ones who are impacted the most by divorce yet tend to suffer in silence, courts across the country are exploring implementing children’s bills of rights in divorce cases.

Here are some basic rights that a child should have when going through the process of their parents getting a divorce on Long Island and how you can get the help you need to make sure the dissolution of your marriage is as easy as possible on your family.

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#1. A Child’s Right to a Meaningful Relationship with Each Parent Without Interference from the Other

Every child has the right to develop a relationship with each of their parents if they so wish, without any kind of interference from the other parent. Even if one parent dislikes the other or believes them unfit, so long as a court determines that the child is safe with the parent, the child may pursue a relationship with them.

Older children may be able to choose if they have a relationship with one or both parents, while the parents of younger children are generally compelled by New York courts to take them to visitation and return them whether the child is cooperative or not.

#2. A Child’s Right to Be Shielded from Conflict

Children have the right to be shielded from parental conflict. Both parents should act accordingly to ensure that arguments, fights, and other disagreements do not take place in front of the child. Children should never be brought into the middle of a conflict to “weigh in” or be pressured to offer their own account of what happened.

#3. A Child’s Right Not to Have to Make Decisions About Custody & Visitation

While a child who a judge deems is mature or old enough to voice their desires regarding child custody and visitation, may be heard, they may not be required to weigh in. Children have the right to remain silent about where and with whom they want or do not want to live.

#4. A Child’s Right to Be Financially Supported by Both Parents

A child has the right to receive equal financial support from both parents, regardless of how much time the child spends with each parent.

#5. A Child’s Right to Personal Space

A child has the right to have a personal sleeping space and a place to put their possessions in each parent’s home, regardless of how much time the child spends with each parent.

#6. A Child’s Right to Physical Safety

All children have the right to physical safety within their homes, no matter which parent they are staying with. They have the right to be protected from abuse, neglect, second-hand smoke, unsafe transportation, and to be protected from individuals who are under the influence of drugs or alcohol.

#7. A Child’s Right to Visit with Extended Family

If a child has extended family that they wish to visit, such as siblings, cousins, aunts, uncles, and grandparents, they have the right to do so. They may visit extended family even if the parent from that family disagrees.

#8. A Child’s Right Consideration of Special Needs

Children with special needs have the right to be considered and for their needs to be accommodated to the best of both parents’ abilities.

#9. A Child’s Right to Participate in Age-Appropriate Social Activities

Children have the right to engage in social activities with peers of their same age and cognitive abilities. Both parents are expected to do their best to facilitate extracurricular activities and social time with friends.

#10. A Child’s Right to Stability

Most of all, children have the right to be and feel stable in their environment at all times, no matter which parent’s home they are at or even if they are at school or the home of an extended family member. Both parents have a responsibility to ensure the child has a stable home life despite the circumstances of the divorce.

Contact Long Island Divorce Attorneys Hornberger Verbitsky, PC

If you have children and are getting a divorce or exploring your separation options, you need the guidance of an experienced Long Island family attorney as soon as possible. Contact Hornberger Verbitsky, P.C. today for your free initial consultation by calling 631-923-1910 or fill out the short form on this page.


Call 631-923-1910 or fill in the form below

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At your meeting, your attorney will describe the many options available and determine together which is the right solution for you. By the end of this meeting we’ll all understand how we can best help you to move forward.

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There is no cost or obligation for this initial consultation. It is simply an opportunity for us to get to know each other, answer your questions and learn if Hornberger Verbitsky, P.C. is right the right law firm for you. Give us a call at 631-923-1910 or fill in the short form below to schedule your free consultation and case evaluation.

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Tara Tocci
Tara Tocci
20:59 17 Sep 21
I called to make an appointment for a consultation to discuss a mediated divorce, the office was fantastic with getting me a prompt appointment. When going in all my questions were asked and I left feeling comfortable in my decision to move forward in using the Hornberger/Verbitsky office. Despite a pandemic going on the office still worked diligently to get my papers filed and my divorce complete in a timely manner. Highly recommend!
cristina romero
cristina romero
20:17 17 Sep 21
Hornberger Verbitsky, P.C were phenomenal in every way. Robert was very genuine, patient and professional. Walking in, I had no idea what to expect but he went above and beyond to explain the entire process thoroughly. He guided and informed me of my rights. Patty was amazing, she answered every question I had no matter how many times I called, she was very understanding. I highly recommend Hornberger Verbitsky, P.C. Even if its just for questions on how to navigate this process.
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