Serving Divorce, Child Custody, and Family Law Clients Throughout New Jersey
For most parents, obtaining custody is one of the most important – and most emotionally charged – aspects of their separation or divorce. When your relationship with your children and their futures hang in the balance, you want nothing more than to be able to walk away with the custody rights you desire. The experienced and dedicated family law attorneys at Romanowski Law Offices can help you fight to make this happen.
Determining Child Custody in New Jersey
When determining custody and visitation rights, the New Jersey courts focus exclusively on serving the best interests of the child. This “best interests” standard seeks to ensure the child’s safety, happiness, health, and physical and mental welfare – generally without direct regard for the parents’ wishes. While parents seeking to resolve custody matters in a Progressive Divorce or through other alternative dispute resolution (ADR) methods have some flexibility to craft custody and visitation rights that makes sense to them, ultimately, the judge who is asked to approve their agreement will have the final say.
Curtis Romanowski and the other lawyers at Romanowski Law Offices have decades of experience helping clients craft enforceable custody arrangements. When working with our clients in ADR, we focus on the same factors as the courts. These include:
- The child’s needs
- The child’s relationships his or her parents and siblings
- The extent and quality of time spent by each parent with the child prior and subsequent to any separation
- Each parent’s fitness to maintain custody
- The parents’ ability to agree, communicate and cooperate in child-related matters
- The parents’ willingness to accept custody and any history of refusing visitation for reasons other than substantiated abuse
- The stability of the home environment offered by each parent
- Any history of domestic violence with either parent
- The safety of the child and either parent from physical abuse by other parent
- The child’s preference, if he or she is old enough and has capacity to form an intelligent opinion
- Access to quality and continuity of education
- Geographic proximity of parents’ homes
- The parents’ employment responsibilities
- The number and ages of other children over which each parent has custody
In addition to these primary factors, courts in New Jersey will also consider certain “informal” factors in deciding child custody cases as well. For example, many courts will seek to determine which parent is most likely to be able to put personal differences aside in order to truly put their child’s interests first. Similarly, certain judges will also undertake to examine which parent is better suited to encourage and foster an appropriate relationship between the child and the other parent.
We Help Clients Fight for Child Custody
When fighting for custody of your children, it is important to be able to tell a story that shows that you are capable and more than willing to take responsibility for their happiness and upbringing. At Romanowski Law Offices, we work closely with our clients to build the strongest possible cases for obtaining the custody rights they desire. If you are considering filing for divorce, or if you have been served with divorce papers, we would encourage you to contact us right away. You have options, and there are important steps you may need to take in order to preserve or improve your chances of obtaining custody. We can help you understand your situation and take appropriate action to protect your parental rights.
Custody Modification, Relocation, and Removal
If your divorce or separation is over and you are seeking to modify an existing custody order, you will need to be able to demonstrate that changed circumstances warrant the modification. Courts in modification cases apply the same “best interests” standard that applies to initial custody determinations. Thus, if circumstances have not changed, in the eyes of the court there would be no reason to disrupt the child’s present situation. Our attorneys have helped numerous parents successfully file and oppose motions for custody modifications.
If you live in New Jersey and are seeking to move out of state with your child, this requires a different analysis. When one parent has primary custody and the other parent objects to the removal or relocation, courts take a “hybrid” approach to resolving parental disputes. Read more about child relocation and removal.
Speak With an Attorney About Your Custody Case Today
The family law attorneys at Romanowski Law Offices have over 50 years of combined legal experience. We have successfully represented countless clients, and we can help you fight for your desired custody rights. Call or click to get started with an expert consultation today.