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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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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

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