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NJ Family Legal Blog Pertinent Information As It Relates To New Jersey Family Laws

Category Archives: Custody

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CAN YOU TRAVEL INTERNATIONALLY WHEN CONSENT IS UNREASONABLY WITHHELD? NEW JERSEY COURT WEIGHS IN

Posted in Custody, Grandparent Visitation, Practice Issues, Visitation/Parenting Time

Too often, I see people trying to make their co-parent’s life difficult just for the sake of being difficult.  Want to take your child to the carnival?  No – it interferes with dad’s parenting time by 30 seconds.  Want to enroll your child in karate?  Sorry – mom has plans to watch paint dry with… Continue Reading

Co-Parenting Calendars – I’m Not Your Secretary – Or Am I?

Posted in Custody, Practice Issues, Visitation/Parenting Time

In the highly scheduled, some say overscheduled, world of suburban children, figuring out where they are supposed to be and when is a constant battle. It is hard enough to do in an intact family, much less in divorced families where the parties are tasked to co-parent.  I know this week, just the addition of end… Continue Reading

H is for HIPAA

Posted in alimony, child support, Cohabitants' Rights, Custody, Divorce, Domestic Violence

Health care information (including mental health information) can be very  important in a family law case in many ways and for many different reasons. In custody matters, the fitness of each parent is front and center of the case.  Often times, a parent’s medical and mental health history will be relevant to the issues that… Continue Reading

CUSTODY WITH PSYCHOLOGICAL PARENT DEEMED IN CHILD’S BEST INTERESTS OVER FIT BIOLOGICAL PARENT

Posted in Custody, Grandparent Visitation

Custody disputes are often an emotionally trying process where litigants are advocating for what they deem to be in the best interests of the child caught in the middle.  Even with the opinion of a custodial expert and months, if not years of litigation, the decision is a difficult one for a trial judge to make. A… Continue Reading

THE PSYCHOLOGY OF MEDIATION

Posted in Custody, Divorce, Mediation/Arbitration

At its core, mediation is designed to be a process by which parties reach an amicable agreement through compromise.  This is what most litigants want, right?  Avoid the fighting, along with the associated time and expense – sounds great.  So what does psychology have to do with the mediation process?  Well, it can truly mean a… Continue Reading

Does Sole Custody Still Exist?

Posted in Custody

Sole custody is kind of like Big Foot or the Loch Ness Monster – everyone has heard of it but few have actually seen it.  Clients tell me all of the time that they want sole custody – either because that is what they believe they should have, or because they have justified it based… Continue Reading

YOUR CHILD THE “CLIENT”

Posted in Custody, Divorce

You know you are intrigued by the title of the blog, but what does it really mean?  I was in a recent mediation session in a divorce matter when the mediator referred to the child as his “client”.  What he meant was that the child’s interests and well-being were his primary concern above all else, but the… Continue Reading

Changing a Child’s Hair Color- Who Decides????

Posted in Custody, Divorce, Visitation/Parenting Time

  It was recently reported that movie star Hallie Berry has taken her daughter’s father to court over his actions of straightening and changing their daughter’s hair color, claiming that he exceeded the bounds rights as a joint legal custodian. Believe it or not, this is not an unusual issue come up when two parents of… Continue Reading

Parents Required To Pay $16,000 Toward Estranged Daughter’s College Education

Posted in child support, Custody, Divorce, modification, Practice Issues

“Caitlyn’s parents Maura and Michael were young loves. Their marriage only lasted two and a half years but the two say they amicably parented to give their daughter the best life they could.” ABC News Anchor, Wendy Saltzman, reported on last night’s news. Caitlyn’s parents became estranged from their daughter when “Instead of following our… Continue Reading

STALKING THE SOUL: CO-PARENTING WITH AN ABUSIVE NARCISSIST (PART II)

Posted in Custody, Divorce, modification, Practice Issues, Visitation/Parenting Time

“Whereas victims rarely know how to use the law in their favor, the aggressor instinctively deploys the necessary maneuvers.  Abusive behavior can be used to find fault in a divorce action. But how can one keep track of guilt by innuendo?” –Marie-France Hirigoyen, Stalking the Soul; Emotional Abuse and the Erosion of Identity. You know… Continue Reading

Pre-School: Is it School, or is it Day Care? And which parent gets to decide?

Posted in Custody, Divorce, Interspousal Agreements, Visitation/Parenting Time

In the days of my childhood, formal education began in Kindergarten when, finally, I got to ride the bus with the big kids.  Not so much any more.  The vast majority of children now go to some type of pre-Kindergarten program during which they have the opportunity to learn the basics of the alphabet, numbers… Continue Reading

WEALTH IN DIVORCE AND ITS IMPACT ON CHILDREN

Posted in Custody, Divorce, Visitation/Parenting Time

An article today on Time’s website discussed the findings of a study comparing the behavioral trends of children of divorce from wealthy and lower income families.   The study, which was conducted by researchers at Georgetown University and the University of Chicago, divided a sample of approximately 4,000 children into three groups by income.  Interestingly,… Continue Reading

THE PRESUMPTION OF CUSTODY IN A DOMESTIC VIOLENCE CASE IS NOT DETERMINATIVE IN A CUSTODY CASE

Posted in Custody, Domestic Violence, Visitation/Parenting Time

In the domestic violence statute, there is a presumption that the abused should get custody.  In the custody statute, the prior history of domestic violence is simply one of the many factors that a court must consider.  There really has not been a reported case that addresses the confluence of these two statutes until July… Continue Reading

STALKING THE SOUL: CO-PARENTING WITH AN ABUSIVE NARCISSIST (PART I)

Posted in Custody, Practice Issues, Visitation/Parenting Time

“Physical violence can be testified to by outside evidence: eyewitnesses, police and medical reports.  With emotional abuse, there is no proof.  It’s clean violence.  Nobody sees anything.” –Marie-France Hirigoyen, Stalking the Soul; Emotional Abuse and the Erosion of Identity. (Amazon.com) Several months ago, after I published Seven Deadly Sins Of Divorce: Pride; The Narcissistic Divorce,… Continue Reading

LESSONS IN ADOLESCENT CUSTODY AND CO-PARENTING FROM THE TEENAGE BRAIN

Posted in Custody, Practice Issues, Visitation/Parenting Time

Moody; impulsive; reckless; brash; exasperating. No, I am not describing Charlie Sheen circa 2011.  I am talking about teenagers. Indeed, Aristotle described these elusive creatures as “heated by nature as drunken men by wine” – and that’s on a normal day.  But rest assured Mom and Dad – your teenager is not trying make your life miserable… Continue Reading

RACHEL CANNING RETURNS HOME TO PARENTS

Posted in Custody

In what is a somewhat anticlimatic, but positive development in the ongoing story of Rachel Canning, the New Jersey teen suing her parents for support and college payments, Rachel has decided to return home.  Apparently there are no financial considerations tied to this decision, and, hopefully, it will allow this family to move forward with… Continue Reading

THE INAPPROPRIATENESS OF LINKING RESOLUTION OF CUSTODY TO RESOLUTION OF FINANCES

Posted in alimony, child support, Custody, Practice Issues, Visitation/Parenting Time

Judges want all issues resolved but especially custody and parenting issues.  No issues are more difficult and heart wrenching to decide – especially when facing a true, bona fide custody dispute (and I am not sure that there are really many of those – but occasionally they occur.) Phote courtesy of freedigitalphotos.net The New Jersey… Continue Reading