In the Matter of Jorge A. Alvarado, appellant,
Vanessa S. Cordova, respondent. (Proceeding No. 1) In the Matter of Vanessa S. Cordova, respondent, Jorge A. Alvarado, appellant. (Proceeding No. 2)
Jacobs, Great Neck, NY, for appellant.
J. Lewisohn, Cedarhurst, NY, attorney for the children.
C. BALKIN, J.P., CHERYL E. CHAMBERS, COLLEEN D. DUFFY, HECTOR
D. LASALLE, JJ.
DECISION & ORDER
from an order of the Family Court, Nassau County (Anna R.
Anzalone, J.), dated March 30, 2016. The order, after a
hearing, denied the father's petition for sole custody of
the parties' children and granted the mother's cross
petition for sole custody of the parties' children and
for permission to relocate the children to Florida, where she
that the order is modified, on the law and the facts, (1) by
adding to the first decretal paragraph thereof, after the
words "in its entirety, " the words "and the
mother shall have sole residential custody of the children in
Florida, " (2) by deleting the fifth decretal paragraph
thereof, and (3) by adding thereto a decretal paragraph
ordering the mother to inform the father of the
children's residential address, including any change in
address; as so modified, the order is affirmed, without costs
or disbursements, and the matter is remitted to the Family
Court, Nassau County, for a reopened hearing and, thereafter,
the determination of a new holiday and vacation visitation
schedule for the children in accordance herewith; and it is
further, ORDERED that pending the new determination by the
Family Court, Nassau County, the provisions of the fifth
decretal paragraph of the order shall remain in effect.
court deciding an initial petition for child custody must
determine what is in the child's best interests"
(Matter of Supangkat v Torres, 101 A.D.3d 889,
889-890; see Eschbach v Eschbach, 56 N.Y.2d 167,
171; Matter of McDonald v Thomas, 154 A.D.3d 763,
although the mother's relocation to Florida precipitated
the commencement of these proceedings, the matter concerns an
initial custody determination, and, therefore, the strict
application of the factors relevant to relocation petitions
(see Matter of Tropea v Tropea, 87 N.Y.2d 727) is
not required (see Matter of McDonald v Thomas, 154
A.D.3d at 764; Matter of Wood v Rago, 135 A.D.3d
949, 950; Matter of Wright v Stewart, 131 A.D.3d
1256, 1257; Matter of Sims v Boykin, 130 A.D.3d 835,
836). The mother's relocation was one factor for the
hearing court to consider in determining what was in the
children's best interests (see Matter of Wood v
Rago, 135 A.D.3d at 950; Matter of Santano v
Cezair, 106 A.D.3d 1097, 1098).
to the father's contentions, the Family Court's
determination to award the mother residential custody of the
children in Florida has a sound and substantial basis in the
record, based upon the totality of the evidence.
we agree with the father and the attorney for the children
that the Family Court erred in failing to set forth a more
precise holiday and vacation visitation schedule. Instead,
the court, in the fifth decretal paragraph of its order,
granted the father "six weeks vacation in the [s]ummer,
excluding the two weeks immediately prior to the start of the
school year and any other visitation as agreed between the
parties." Given the history of the parties'
relationship, the order is unrealistic to the extent that it
requires the parties to cooperate in reaching an agreement
(see Matter of Shonyo v Shonyo, 151 A.D.3d 1595,
1597; Gillis v Gillis, 113 A.D.3d 816, 817).
we must remit the matter to the Family Court, Nassau County,
for a reopened hearing and, thereafter, a new determination
setting forth a more detailed schedule of holiday and
vacation visitation that is in the best interests of the
children (see Gillis v Gillis, 113 A.D.3d at 817;
Matter of Felty v Felty, 108 A.D.3d 705, 708-709;
Matter of Grunwald v Grunwald, 108 A.D.3d 537, 540;
Matter of Ross v Morrison, 98 A.D.3d 515, 517;
Matter of Aguirre v Romano, 73 A.D.3d 912, 914). The
new schedule shall grant the father six weeks of visitation
with the children, in New York, during the summer, excluding
the two weeks immediately prior to the start of the school
year, and shall set forth clear rules for establishing and
implementing a summer vacation schedule, including reasonable
prior notice to the mother and responsibility for ensuring
the children's travel to and from Florida. The new
schedule shall also address the issue of visitation during
major holidays and other school recess periods, and shall
consider the possibility of visitation by the father in
Florida, as well as in New York.
agree with the father and the attorney for the children that
the order appealed from requires further ...