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Category Archives: Custody

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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

NEW JERSEY FATHER ORDERED TO PAY $112,000 FOR DAUGHTER’S LAW SCHOOL TUITION

Posted in Child Support, Custody, Divorce, Modification, Practice Issues

Talk about sticker shock.  A New Jersey father was recently ordered to pay more than $112,000 for his daughter to attend Cornell Law School. But is it really shocking?  The parties’ divorce agreement, entered into in 2009, did provide that the parents would split the cost of law school provided that she maintained over a… Continue Reading

BUT WHAT ABOUT THE FIRST AMENDMENT? A FAMILY COURT’S ROLE IN RESOLVING RELIGIOUS DISPUTES BETWEEN PARENTS

Posted in Custody, Practice Issues

Americans are almost obsessed with the ideal that government should be entirely separated from any religion. Indeed, the term “separation of church and state”—a quote from Thomas Jefferson—is the most common label for the freedom of religion guaranteed by the First Amendment of the Constitution. But how does this bedrock principle play out when a… Continue Reading

APPELLATE DIVISION FINDS THAT TRIAL COURT ERRED IN DIVESTING NEW JERSEY OF JURISDICTION OVER CUSTODY AND PARENTING TIME ISSUES

Posted in Custody, Interspousal Agreements, Visitation/Parenting Time

Decisions involving New Jersey’s Uniform Child Custody and Jurisdiction Enforcement Act (UCCJEA) are often very complicated matters that require courts to undertake an extremely detailed, fact-specific analysis to ensure that the issue of jurisdiction – what state or country should hear the matter – is properly made.  As a result, before you review this blog post discussing S.B…. Continue Reading

IF HER BOYFRIEND CAN’T BE AROUND THE KIDS, NEITHER CAN YOUR GIRLFRIEND, “TO BE FAIR”!?!

Posted in Custody, Practice Issues, Visitation/Parenting Time

Is it a court’s job to be “fair” or to get it right?  If you file a clear enforcement motion, should a court grant part of the other side’s knee jerk, bogus cross motion, just to give everyone a little something?  When deciding a temporary support amount, should the number be the right number, as… Continue Reading

THE PARTY, NOT THEIR LAWYER, IS SUPPOSED TO CO-PARENT WITH THEIR SPOUSE OR FORMER SPOUSE

Posted in Custody, Practice Issues, Visitation/Parenting Time

As Supreme Court Justice Potter Stewart said when discussing his threshhold for determining obscenity/pornography, “I know it when I see it, ” that is how I feel about emails regarding routine or what should be routine parenting issues that have been drafted not by one party, but by their lawyer.  The pretextual  blathering or legalese that… Continue Reading

IN WITH THE LION – MARCH AS THE PEAK TIME FOR DIVORCE FILINGS.

Posted in Custody, Divorce

As our loyal readers may know, Eric Solotoff blogs annually about the so-called “New Year’s Resolution Divorce,” where the number of new clients walking through our doors spikes at the beginning of the new year.  There are, most definitely, verifiable statistics to show that this concept is for real.  A new cnn.com article, “In January ‘ex’… Continue Reading

BACK AWAY FROM YOUR IPHONE – THE PERILS OF SOCIAL MEDIA STRIKE AGAIN!

Posted in Custody, Divorce, Practice Issues

In reading about the massive case involving dozens of New York firefighters and police officers who are charged with defrauding the Social Security disability system by faking the nature of their own conditions in order to procure government benefits, key pieces of evidence collected by the Manhattan District Attorney’s Office include Facebook postings from the accused… Continue Reading

SEVEN DEADLY SINS OF DIVORCE: PRIDE; THE NARCISSISTIC DIVORCE

Posted in Custody, Divorce, Visitation/Parenting Time

Sometimes I feel like a doctor.  A patient comes in, describes symptoms to me, and I prescribe a course of treatment. Some ailments are more complicated than others.  An amicable divorce, for example, could be analogized to a common cold.  A moderately contested divorce with relatively few issues to the flu, perhaps. But then there… Continue Reading

APPELLATE DIVISION SEEKS TO PROTECT THE PARENTAL BOND

Posted in Custody, Divorce, Domestic Violence, Visitation/Parenting Time

Highly acrimonious custody disputes abound for countless reasons, many of which are tied to the specific facts and circumstances of a given case.  A determination of the most appropriate custody arrangement (joint or shared legal and residential custody) and parenting time schedule can be a difficult process, especially when multiple custody evaluators are retained to… Continue Reading

STOP, COLLABORATE AND LISTEN – SETTLEMENT IN MEDIATION

Posted in Counsel Fee Awards, Custody, Divorce, Practice Issues

The golden words in this blog title once spoken by Robert Van Winkle (more famously known by another name) could and should be well heeded by family lawyers and litigants when trying to settle a case.  So why, then, are they so often ignored?  I recently attended a mediation in a case where, as soon as I walked into… Continue Reading

Custody and Parenting Time: Celebrating the Holidays Twice

Posted in Custody, Visitation/Parenting Time

For many, the holiday season includes exercising traditional family celebrations.  For separated or divorced parents, the season brings about acrimony regarding which parent celebrates which holiday with the children because each parent wants to include the children in their respective family celebrations.  As one very respected and wise Judge noted “There is nothing wrong with… Continue Reading

SEVEN DEADLY SINS OF DIVORCE: GLUTTONY

Posted in Alimony, Child Support, Custody, Divorce, Domestic Violence, Equitable Distribution, Modification, Other, Practice Issues, Visitation/Parenting Time

A new report in Scientific American Mind suggests that humans who tend to overeat may develop the same patterns of neural activity as drug addicts. For example, in 2006, a physician at substance abuse center in Michigan noticed that many of his patients had recently undergone bariatric surgery to lose weight.  When they succeeded, patients… Continue Reading

DIVORCE “GIFTS” FOR THE EIGHT CRAZY NIGHTS OF HANUKKAH

Posted in Alimony, Custody, Divorce, Interspousal Agreements, Practice Issues

While I never thought that I would be quoting Adam Sandler on this blog, now is as good a time as any.  As he once famously sang, “Hanukkah is the festival of lights.  Instead of one day of presents, we have eight crazy nights.”  My kids are certainly ready to go, already asking what presents… Continue Reading