Generally, child custody laws dictate whether parents may seek joint custody, rules for visitation, and the procedures for ordering custody. New Jersey, like all other states in the U.S., has adopted the Uniform Child Custody Act (UCCA), which helps prevent and resolve interstate child custody conflicts. Additionally, New Jersey child custody laws allow grandparents to legally request visitation rights.
New Jersey courts consider a number of factors to determine child custody orders. However, the court always considers the best interests of the child first. For example, when parents are seeking joint custody, the court examines the parents’ ability to agree, to communicate, and their willingness to cooperate with regard to child rearing issues. It is important to note: History of domestic violence will figure prominently in any custody decision.
Typically, the factors below are considered when determining child custody in New Jersey (this is not an exhaustive list and other factors may be relevant on a case by case basis):
- Interaction of the child with its parents and siblings
- Preference of the child (if 12 or older)
- Stability of the home environment
- Fitness of parents
- Parents’ employment responsibilities.
Child custody is a very serious matter, and can involve heated, difficult discussions. Sometimes parents are able to work out amicable agreements that put the child’s needs first, but divorce proceedings often involve conflict. Therefore, it’s always a good idea to hire a child custody attorney (or a divorce lawyer with child custody experience). If you are contemplating divorce and have children, call Radom & Wetter today to discuss how to resolve your child custody issue to ensure the best possible outcome for the children and parents.
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If you require professional legal advice and representation regarding personal issues anywhere in New Jersey, make sure your legal rights are protected by seeking the legal advice of an experienced law firm. Contact us at 908-707-1500 or use our Contact Form.