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How does the Court determine sole custody should be awarded to a parent?

In New York, a parent may be awarded sole custody of a child if it is deemed to be in the child's best interests. The court will consider a variety of factors when determining custody, including:

1. The child's age, health, and special needs.

2. Each parent's ability to provide for the child's physical, emotional, and intellectual needs.

3. The child's relationship with each parent and any siblings or other family members.

4. Each parent's history of caring for the child and their ability to provide a stable home environment.

5. Any history of domestic violence, substance abuse, or other issues that may impact the child's well-being.

The parent moving for sole custody must be able to demonstrate that the other parent is unfit to have custody or that it would not be in the child's best interests for the other parent to have custody. In most cases, the court will endeavor to maintain a relationship between the child and both parents, unless there is sufficient evidence that it would be harmful to the child.

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