Tanya L. Freeman

Child Custody: We Advocate for Your Custody Rights

By Tanya L. Freeman, Attorney at Law

Child Custody Attorney New Jersey

Resolving child custody is often the most emotionally devastating aspect of the divorce journey. It can be painful and confusing for the parents as well as the children. Child Custody Attorney New Jersey

In pursuing sensible solutions, it’s important to dispel the myth that courts are automatically inclined to grant custody to the mother in a male/female household. Fitness, willingness, and, for older children, stated preference, are more likely than gender to be the key factors in deciding custody. Assuming there is opposition to your full or partial custody, we may look at strategies that include:

  • Demonstrating your equal or superior competency as a parent

  • Demonstrating the emotional, financial, and environmental fitness that would allow you to parent on your own

  • Dealing with court-appointed investigators

  • Presenting yourself before the court

And much more. In addition, we can offer advice and guidance to help you to understand parenting during your custody suit, make smart choices when dealing with your former spouse, and develop a parenting plan based on the best interests of your children.

We think you’ll find that aided by our compassion and care, you’ll be able to chart a positive path forward for yourself and your children.

Resolving child custody is often the most emotionally devastating aspect of the divorce journey. It can be painful and confusing for the parents as well as the children. 

In pursuing sensible solutions, it’s important to dispel the myth that courts are automatically inclined to grant custody to the mother in a male/female household. Fitness, willingness and, for older children, stated preference, are more likely than gender to be the key factors in deciding custody. Assuming there is opposition to your full or partial custody, we may look at strategies that include: 

  • Engaging forensic evaluators to assist in making recommendations to the court
  • Advocacy in mediation to establish a custody plan that is in the best interest of the children
  • Presenting yourself before the court

And much more. In addition, we can offer advice and guidance to help you to understand parenting during your custody suit, make smart choices when dealing with your former spouse, and develop a parenting plan based on the best interests of your children. 

We think you’ll find that, aided by our compassion and care, you’ll be able to chart a positive path forward for yourself and your children. 

Looking to get legal advice about Child Custody?

Learn all about Child Custody in New Jersey

Understanding Child Custody in New Jersey

Child Custody Attorney New Jersey

What is Child Custody?

Divorced parents must determine how to share time with their children. Child custody is the ability of one or both parents to raise their children and exercise parental rights. Not all child custody disputes in New Jersey go to court, but when they do, the courts decide what they believe is best for the child.

What are the Types of Child Custody?

Joint Legal Custody

The most popular kind of child custody is joint legal custody since it enables both parents to be involved in all aspect of their child’s life. When parents share legal custody, one usually takes on the role of the child’s primary residential caretaker while the other one acts as a backup. When there is joint legal custody, both parents must agree on significant choices for the children’s welfare, including their health, education, and general welfare. Daily choices must be made by the primary custodial parent, who should occasionally consult or alert the non-custodial parent. The parent who is caring for the child at any given time is expected to make choices that are best for the child.

Sole Legal and Physical Custody

One parent has sole legal and physical custody of the child under this sort of NJ child custody arrangement. Without consulting or informing the noncustodial parent, that parent makes all significant choices involving the child’s welfare, education, and health as well as all day-to-day decisions. When one parent is absent or found unfit, or when there is a history of child neglect, drug abuse, established DYFS issues, etc., sole custody is typically applied.

Shared Legal and Physical Custody

Child Custody Attorney New Jersey

This shared custody arrangement appeals to many New Jersey parents because it ensures a more equitable distribution of parenting time. Alternating weeks, where one parent spends one week with the child and the other spends the next, would be a typical illustration. A different schedule would involve giving one parent four days, including overnights, and giving the other parent three days, also including overnights, with the child.

Choosing the Best Custody Alternative

Child custody disputes can be emotionally taxing, therefore child custody attorneys will work with you to determine your requirements, explain your alternatives to you, and help you feel less anxious during the procedure. We give you the information, resources, and direction you need to make deliberative decisions that are in your family’s best interests.

We urge you to call us and ask for a free consultation. During your consultation, a skilled family law attorney will carefully go over all of your choices and provide you advice on the best course of action to successfully handle even the most challenging child custody disputes. You will receive assistance in carefully drafting a reasonable custody and parenting time plan once you have chosen the appropriate course of action. This parenting time plan will be created especially for you and your family and will take into account a number of variables, including:

  • Work and personal related activities

  • Travel schedules

  • The child’s needs

  • Extended family members

  • and more

No matter which child custody arrangement is best for your family, our child custody attorney will defend your rights and promote the well-being of your children.

What Happens When Parents Can’t Agree on Custody or Parenting Time?

Often, several stages are involved before the child custody case is brought before a court for a trial if parents cannot agree on necessary custody or parenting time concerns.

1. Mandatory Mediation for Custody in New Jersey

In New Jersey, court personnel will review the documents to see whether the parents disagree about custody when someone with a child applies for divorce. If so, the court will direct them to mediation.

2. Evaluations of the Child’s Custody and Other Inquiries

If mediation is unsuccessful, the court may request that the Family Division conduct an inquiry. Investigators will check into the following:

  • The parents’ moral character and fitness

  • The family’s financial situation

  • The houses the children will reside in or visit (limited to factual details), and 

  • Both parents’ criminal histories, among other things

A judge may request one of these specialists to undertake a custody examination since New Jersey law stipulates that only licensed mental health professionals may make recommendations regarding the moral character and fitness of the parents. The approach may include psychological assessment, records examination, as well as parent (and perhaps child) interviews. 

Then, with suggestions, the evaluator will provide a report to the parents and the court. Although the judge cannot accept these suggestions, most judges attach great weight to the evaluator’s assessment of what is best for the children. Parents may still take issue with the report. And the judge could consider that if they can demonstrate that the assessor was biased. Sometimes each parent may select their own custody expert, which might result in a “battle of the experts,” with the judge judging whose report is more trustworthy.

In addition, judges may appoint a guardian ad litem (GAL) if they feel the children need someone to represent them in a custody battle. GALs, typically lawyers, will interview the parents, the children, and anybody else who may know essential details. They can also get a hold of any necessary paperwork. Finally, the GAL will provide the court with a report that includes conclusions and suggestions. 

Child Custody Attorney New Jersey

3. Parents’ Proposed Custody Plans

Parents will occasionally agree after seeing the findings of the custody evaluation. However, they may still not settle their differences. In that case, they will each need to submit a proposed custody and parenting time/visitation plan, along with a parenting schedule and why they seek the particular sort of custody

Frequently Asked Questions 

What Qualifies as an Unfit Parent in New Jersey Custody Cases?

According to New Jersey child custody rules, a parent may be deemed “unfit” by the court if they:

  • Have a history of abusing drugs or alcohol
  • Possess a background in physical abuse
  • They have shown no concern or support for the child’s welfare

At What Age Can a Child in New Jersey Choose Which Parent to Live With?

A judge could consider the requests of a kid if they are older than 12 years old. However, regardless of the child’s desire, the court will determine the child’s ultimate custody arrangement based on what they feel is in the child’s best interests. A child can only genuinely select which parent to live with once they are either emancipated or reach the age of majority, which in New Jersey is 18.

Experienced New Jersey Child Custody Attorney

y New Jersey Child Custody Attorney

The best approach to guaranteeing your rights are safeguarded and to working toward a favorable outcome if both parents are unable to reach a custody arrangement is to enlist the aid of a skilled New Jersey family law attorney. With a focus on the child’s best interests, Tanya L. Freeman, Attorney At Law, has experience assisting parents in resolving even the most challenging child custody disputes. Child Custody Attorney New Jersey

Looking for a Reputable Child Custody Lawyer?
Call Tanya L. Freeman, Attorney at Law
at (973) 939-0100

Tanya L. Freeman, Attorney at Law
100 Eagle Rock Avenue, Suite 105
East Hanover, New Jersey 07936
(973) 939-0100