The law in New Jersey is designed so that decisions remain gender neutral. Not taking into account any extenuating circumstances of a relationship, a father has just as much right to custody of his children as the mother does in situations of divorce or separation. If you are a father who believes your rights have been compromised, it is important to seek the help of a reliable family law attorney. Katherine K. Wagner has worked with many fathers to help them understand and protect their legal rights and options. As you go through the divorce process and fathers rights issues such as child support, child custody, and parenting time come up, you will want to have an attorney on your side to make sure you are treated fairly.
Common Questions About Fathers Rights in NJ
Is it harder for a father to get custody?
The court favoring mothers over fathers is one of the most common misconceptions in divorce and child custody proceedings today. While this may have been true in the past, it is no longer the case. New Jersey law holds a child’s mother and father in equal regard in custody issues.
How is it decided which parent gets primary custody?
In most child custody cases, one parent will be chosen as the Parent of Primary Residence, who the children will live with most of the time. The other parent is the Parent of Alternate Residence and will be generally be designated a scheduled amount of parenting time. The court determines who will be the Parent of Primary Residence based on factors including but not limited to:
- The parent’s physical and mental health
- The parent’s lifestyle and its positive or negative effect on the child
- The parent’s ability to provide emotional support and basic needs
- The child’s established living conditions, including education, and the potential effects of changing their status quo.
- The child’s preference, if they are of a certain age.
If a father is in a better position to take care of his children, the court will grant him the status of primary caretaker, just as they would if the mother were in the same position.
What are my rights regarding parenting time?
If you don’t have primary custody of your child, you have the right to some form of parenting time with your child according to an agreed-upon schedule. Many parents choose to create this schedule together. However, if they are unable to agree, either parent may petition the court for assistance in determining custody. A judge will decide on a parenting time plan that is best for the child.
Need to Speak With an Attorney About Fathers Rights?
If you feel like your rights as a father are being infringed and would like to work with an experienced NJ family law attorney regarding a divorce and/or child custody, contact Katherine K. Wagner today for a consultation.