Hackensack Parental Alienation Attorneys
As a Hackensack parent, your child and his or her wellbeing is your priority. This does not change just because you and your child’s other parent separate or divorce, and it is quite likely your child’s other parent shares a similar priority and focus. In the aftermath of a divorce or separation, however, this priority and focus of your child’s other parent can cause him or her to attempt to disrupt or even sever the bond and relationship you have with your child. This is a phenomenon known as parental alienation.
If left unchecked, parental alienation efforts can ruin your relationship with your child – potentially for life. If you value your relationship with your child and your ability to play a role in your child’s upbringing, it is important you take prompt legal action. With the assistance of Aretsky Law Group, P.C., the actions and behaviors of your child’s other parents can be brought to the court’s attention and the other parent’s alienation efforts can be brought to a halt.
Parental Alienation Efforts in Hackensack
“Parental alienation” can be loosely defined as any behaviors that one parent engages in when the goal of those behaviors is to damage the relationship between the child and his or her other parent. These behaviors may consist of actions, words, or any combination of these two, including:
- Criticizing or demeaning the other parent in front of the child;
- Communicating threats (direct or indirect) to the child if he or she shows affection, love, and/or support for the other parent;
- Revealing negative information or “airing the other parent’s past” in front of the child when doing so serves no legitimate purpose other than to make the other parent seem immoral, unreliable, or like a bad person;
- Preventing the child from speaking with the other parent by telephone or computer at reasonable hours and times;
- Prohibiting the child from visiting with and/or communicating with the other parent on special occasions (such as denying the child the opportunity to see his or her mother on Mother’s Day);
- Preventing the other parent from participating in special moments and occasions in the child’s life (such as working to stop the other parent from attending his or her child’s school play or a birthday party);
- Encouraging the child not to see or spend time with the other parent.
While one or two instances of alienating behavior over the course of a child’s life are likely to be insufficient, when these behaviors occur routinely and with regularity, the child will slowly but certainly begin to not desire the company and involvement of the other parent in his or her life. Because the custodial parent has more frequent and regular access to the child, it is common for custodial parents to engage in alienating behaviors and cause harm to the child’s relationship with the noncustodial parent.
New Jersey Law Does Not Permit Parental Alienation
New Jersey Revised Statutes Section 9:2-4 states unequivocally that the lawmakers of the State believe it is important for children to be assured of the involvement of both parents in their lives even if those parents decide to divorce or separate. Therefore, the laws of New Jersey operate with a presumption that the involvement of both parents in the life of a specific child is not only preferable but necessary to the child’s wellbeing. Hackensack divorce courts will rarely prohibit a parent from being a part of the life of his or her child absent some emergency or other facts demonstrating that the parent’s actions and behaviors threaten the wellbeing and safety of the child.
Oftentimes, parental alienation will occur without the court’s knowledge. Because courts do not continuously monitor all divorce or child custody cases, the first indication that parental alienation is occurring is likely to be a report or motion from the parent who is being alienated from his or her child. This is why Aretsky Law Group, P.C. encourages you to speak with us as soon as these behaviors begin. The sooner you retain our services and allow us to work on your behalf, we will promptly file the appropriate legal motion(s) to bring the parental alienating behaviors to the court’s attention. With our assistance and the presentation of appropriate evidence and testimony to substantiate the allegations, a court may find the parent engaged in the alienating behavior in contempt of court and may adjust the custody or visitation schedule, fine the offending parent, and/or (in extreme cases) require the offending parent to serve a sanction in jail.
Speak with Aretsky Law Group, P.C.
Your relationship with your child is too important to ignore or allow to wither. Call Aretsky Law Group, P.C. at 1-800-537-4154 and schedule a consultation to review your situation with our experienced and committed team of Hackensack family law attorneys.