Dutchess County Lawyer answers most common questions to help clients save time and maintain social distancing

Dutchess County Lawyer answers most common questions to help clients save time and maintain social distancing

Dutchess County Lawyer answers most common questions to help clients save time and maintain social distancing

After the Covid-19 restrictions, Courts in Dutchess County, NY are now open for e-filing. Holding off on hiring a lawyer for your divorce at this time can have significant legal consequences. File today and avoid court backlogs and extended wait times. Move forward today with the Law Office of Kevin Mackay.

Before hiring a lawyer in Dutchess County, NY for your divorce, child custody, criminal matter, dui, personal injury case or any other serious legal matter please make sure you ask the following questions.

For the sake of transparency and to save time during your free consultation with the Law Office of Kevin MacKay here are some questions answered for you.

1. How long have you been practicing law? I have been practicing law for 27 years.

2. How many trials have you done? How often do you settle vs try a case? I have done hundreds of trials in divorce actions, family court proceedings and criminal proceedings ranging from traffic matters to murder cases. While many cases do settle, I will never let my clients settle for anything less than they deserve, I am a litigation attorney and will take any case to trial to get the best results for my clients.

3. How much of your practice is devoted to my legal needs? While I practice different areas of law I concentrate mostly on matrimonial and criminal law. I will never take on a case that I was not 100% confident that I can meet your needs and represent you to the best of my abilities.

4. Will you be the attorney appearing in court with me? How do I know you are personally going to handle my case? Just because you say so in your commercial? Yes, I will be appearing with you in Court. I keep in contact with my clients to discuss all aspects of the case, not only will I be handling your case but I keep you involved every step of the way.

 

5. If necessary to send another attorney in your place to Court with me will you be briefing that attorney to avoid unnecessary Court appearances? While there are times when it is necessary to ask another attorney to cover a court appearance I try to avoid this. In the event that it be 100% necessary that I must ask for attorney coverage: I will only send in an attorney who is experienced in the area of law. I will make sure the covering attorney has all necessary documents and knowledge of your case to provide the best representation on your behalf.

6. Who will be working on my file? I will be working on your file as well as my paralegal.

7. Can I reach you directly in an emergency? Yes, not only am I reachable 24 hours a day 7 days a week through my office phone, I also provide my clients with my cell phone number to reach me in an emergency.

8. What is your client caseload and do you have time to handle my case? Caseloads can fluctuate based upon difference factors. I do not take every case that comes into my office. If I feel that I cannot give your case the time and attention it deserves I will advise you of that and recommend you seek a different attorney.

9. What access do you have to up to date case law and legal research? My office uses Lexis Advance. I have tried other legal research programs but find this is the best.

Poughkeepsie divorce attorneys and New York state divorce law explained

Poughkeepsie divorce attorneys and New York state divorce law explained

Poughkeepsie divorce attorneys and New York state divorce law explained

Divorce is the final, legal ending of a marriage by court order. If you have a divorce case in court, you may hear lawyers and court staff call it a matrimonial action. A divorce in New York is also referred to as a Matrimonial Action. The individual bringing the action is identified as the plaintiff (claimant), and the other spouse is identified as the defendant.

New York has laws that limit how you can obtain a divorce, that apply in a Poughkeepsie divorce case too. There are at this time seven arguments (grounds) you can bring into play to get a divorce in Poughkeepsie.  The divorce ruling will comprise orders about marital property and marital debts, as well as custody, visitation, child support and spousal support.

How to get a Divorce?

The Supreme Court of the State of New York is the only court that handles divorce cases, and a Supreme Court judge is the only person who can legally grant a divorce. A New York court can only decide a divorce case if at least one of the spouses is a New Yorker. In most cases, one of the spouses must have lived in New York for at least one year before trying to get a divorce.

If living in the Dutchess County area, you should go to the Dutchess Supreme and County Court, remember, you cannot get a divorce in Family Court, but you can go to your local Family Court for help with child support, child custody, child visitation, spousal maintenance, and paternity.

What are the 7 grounds for divorce in Poughkeepsie, NY ?

Same as allover the NY State the 7 grounds for divorce in Poughkeepsie, NY and in the Dutchess County area are

  • Irretrievable Breakdown
  • Cruel and inhuman treatment
  • Abandonment
  • Imprisonment
  • Adultery
  • Judgment of Separation
  • Separation Agreement

 

This will be clearly explained in one of our future blogposts, or if you are in need of urgent advice you can contact or get directions for the SMANDB Poughkeepsie Divorce Attorneys HERE

Poughkeepsie divorce law

Handling Poughkeepsie divorce and matrimonial cases for 24 years

The practice of law is an ever changing landscape in the Hudson Valley

I have been handling Poughkeepsie divorce and matrimonial cases for 24 years and both the laws and how the bar handles Poughkeepsie divorces have drastically changed in just two decades. When I first started practice it was rare that a father would ever be granted custody. There was a preference for the mother to be granted primary custody based on old beliefs that it was in the best interest of a child to be nurtured by their mother. These beliefs had evaporated in psychology over twenty years ago and it was understood that substantial contact with both parents was in the best interest of a child’s development and not just substantial contact with the mother.

Courts are creatures of precedent and it has taken time for the Courts to evolve and catch up with the psychology of today and let go of the erroneous advice of the past. It is important for a Poughkeepsie matrimonial attorney not only to understand the Courts but to read  and understand the psychology of children in divorces and divided families. This understanding can be used to assist Poughkeepsie families in making the best choices for their children. How does an infant bond with a mother and father? What is the importance of breast feeding? When is it best to transition to an overnight schedule? Not all Courts will see the answer to these questions in the same way and reading and understanding the most updated advice from doctors in this area is crucial knowledge for a Poughkeepsie attorney in assisting clients.

Practicing law is more than just reading the law and appearing in Court. It is having the knowledge and life experience to assist the client and bring intelligent knowledge based arguments to support your client’s position in the Court room. Experience and knowledge matters and will make a difference in any case.

Handling Poughkeepsie divorce and matrimonial cases
Handling Poughkeepsie divorce and matrimonial cases for 24 years
CHOOSING THE RIGHT POUGHKEEPSIE DIVORCE ATTORNEYS

Choosing the Right Poughkeepsie Family Attorney

Having practiced Poughkeepsie divorce law for 23 years choosing the right attorney to handle your Dutchess County case is not an easy task.  I routinely take over cases from other Poughkeepsie Divorce attorneys who know the law but are not able to get along with the clients or have handed the case off to a less experienced person in the Dutchess County law firm.  I often refuse to take on a Poughkeepsie separation case because I feel the expectation of the client is not realistic and I will be unable to meet their expectations and thus result in a poor attorney client relationship.

This leads to RULE #1 in choosing a Poughkeepsie divorce attorney: Meet with the attorney who you are going to work with and ask them questions.  A few of the questions which would seem to be common sense are rarely asked,

 A. How long have you been doing this for?

 B. Have you ever done a trial? 

 C.  Are you the attorney who is going to work on my case?  They may sound good, look and smell good, but is this bait and switch to a less experienced or different associate.  

         You have an absolute right to know who is going to be working on your Poughkeepsie divorce case because in the most difficult time in your life this is the person who you are going to have a relationship with as yours is breaking apart.  If you don’t meet the Dutchess County attorney who is handling your case at the intake you don’t hire that firm!

D.  What are the issues you see in my Poughkeepsie divorce and how can you help me?

         These are just the basic common sense questions that should be asked at all interviews with a Dutchess County family attorney.  It all relates back to RULE #1: Meet with the Poughkeepsie family attorney who is going to handle your case and see if he or she is right for you.

CHOOSING THE RIGHT POUGHKEEPSIE DIVORCE ATTORNEYS