Court Attorney Referee Karen M.C. Cortes serves in Bronx County Family Court presiding over cases involving custody, guardianship, visitation, and family offenses. Referee Cortes currently sits on the New York City Family Court Custody, Visitation, and Family Offense Operations Advisory Committee to the Administrative Judge of the New York City Family Court and the Bronx County Family Court Strategic Plan Implementation Team for Custody, Visitation, and Family Offense.
Prior to becoming a Court Attorney Referee, Referee Cortes was a Court Attorney for the New York City Family Court for six years where she conducted compliance and settlement conferences on child neglect and abuse, custody, guardianship, visitation, family offense, juvenile delinquency, and PINS cases. Referee Cortes also served for five years as a trial attorney in the Family Court Legal Services Division at the Administration for Children’s Services (“ACS”), where she tried and supervised hundreds of abuse and neglect trials and was a recipient of the ACS Division of Family Court Legal Services Permanency Advocate Award.
Referee Cortes was formerly a member of the Family Court and Family Law Committee at the New York City Bar Association and Kings County Family Court Disproportionate Minority Representation Committee. Referee Cortes is currently a member of the Bronx County Bar Association and New York State Women’s Bar Association Bronx Chapter.
Referee Cortes earned her undergraduate degree from New York University and her law degree from Brooklyn Law School, where she was a recipient of the Judge Doris A. Thompson and Judge Edward Thompson Award for Excellence in Trial Advocacy.
Philip Katz, Esq. has been a member of the firm of Fink & Katz, PLLC, a firm that concentrates its practice in the areas of Family Law, Criminal Law and Immigration Law for 20 years. He is bilingual; serving his clients in both the English and Japanese languages fluently. He graduated with his JD from Hofstra Law School. In addition to his work at Fink & Katz, PLLC, attorney Katz has also been a member of the Assigned Counsel Panel in the New York Family Court since 2011, the Part 36 Panel since 2014, sits as a member of the Family Court Advisory Committee for the Appellate Division, First Department, and serves as the current President of the New York Family Court Assigned Counsel Association. In addition to representing adults, attorney Katz represents children as well in New York County Family Court and Supreme Court. He is also an Associate Professor of Criminal Justice at Farmingdale State College.