New Jersey’s child custody rules

Just about every parent has a deep and passionate connection to their children in New Jersey. As such, if you’re going through a divorce it can be frightening to negotiate child custody arrangements.

The process of deciding when you can and cannot spend time with your children isn’t easy. As such, the more you know about New Jersey child custody law and how it works, the more you can feel at ease when navigating your child custody negotiations.

New Jersey courts and child custody

New Jersey parents and family law attorneys usually prefer to negotiate child custody arrangements and parenting plans out of court, so that the parents can remain in control of the process. However, it’s not always possible for parents to agree. When this is the case, a New Jersey court will decide issues relating to custody, child care, child support and the education of the children.

When your child custody matter goes to court, the judge will issue a temporary child custody order. The judge will make his or her temporary child custody arrangements in accordance with your child’s best interests. The judge will often seek to continue whatever the current child care arrangements happen to be.

Later, the court will issue its permanent ruling on child custody. You and your spouse will have a legal obligation to follow through with the terms of the order implicitly.

The types of child custody in New Jersey

There are two types of child custody arrangements in New Jersey:

Joint custody: The parents share legal custody — meaning that the parents will decide important decisions together and must come to agreement. They may also share physical custody. Alternatively, one parent might receive sole physical custody, and the other will typically receive parenting time and visitation rights in this case.

Sole custody: This means that a parent has received full legal custody and will make all decisions about the children independently from the other parent. In these cases, the non-custodial parent usually receives visitation rights and parenting time.

If you’re in the throes of a child custody dispute, learn your legal rights under the law. This knowledge will help you immensely to reduce stress while navigating the issue effectively.