Hackensack Child Custody and Parenting Plan Attorneys
Hackensack may be a good place to raise a family, but this does not mean that families in Hackensack do not divorce or separate. When couples who have children in Hackensack do part ways, important decisions regarding the children they have in common must be made. With whom will the children primarily live? Where will they go to school and how will the parents make decisions regarding the children’s education and health? When will each parent be able to spend time with the children? These questions are typically answered by courts through custody orders and parenting plans.
When issues of custody and parenting time are being considered by a family law judge, you need an experienced and dedicated advocate on your side. Because custody orders and parenting plans may be difficult to modify, they can have a profound impact on your ability to form a meaningful relationship with your child. Aretsky Law Group, P.C. will work tirelessly and diligently to protect your parental rights and help ensure that your divorce or separation has minimal negative impact on your child.
Frequently Asked Questions About Child Custody and Parenting Plans in Hackensack
Do courts have to enter child custody orders and parenting plans?
Disputes over parenting time (parenting plans) and/or residence of the child (child custody) that are brought before a court and that are not resolved by the parties will typically result in the court entering orders that the parties must observe and obey. When the parties can agree on custody arrangements and/or parenting time, courts will generally adopt the terms of such agreements and make them orders of the court. When the parties cannot reach any agreement, the court will consider “the best interest of the child” or children and enter appropriate custody orders and parenting plans.
Does my child get to have a say in where he or she lives and/or how often he or she must see the other parent?
Courts presiding over Hackensack custody disputes and cases generally presume that it is in the child’s best interests that the child have as much access to both parents as possible. However, New Jersey Statutes Section 9:2-4(c) instructs courts to also consider a child’s preferences or desires in some situations. If your child is older, a court will usually take the child’s desires and wishes into account when entering custody and visitation orders – especially if your child is able to articulate reasonable and intelligent reasons for his or her preferences.
How can I modify my child custody orders / parenting plan?
Courts generally do not like modifying child custody orders or parenting plans frequently because doing so often brings uncertainty and unpredictability into the life of the child. However, courts will consider making modifications where (1) doing so is necessary to protect the child from abusive behavior; (2) the parties are in agreement as to the changes that need to be made; and/or (3) the modifications are necessary because of a significant or substantial change in the circumstances of the parent (such as a job relocation).
Do courts prefer children to be with one parent or the other?
In the past, many courts (including those in New Jersey) believed mothers were better able to provide and care for children. As a result, many courts tended to favor placing children with their mothers as opposed to their fathers. Such presumptions and prejudices are a thing of the past, however: now courts and judges do not presume that a mother or father is likely to be better able to care for the child than others.
How long will it take for my Hackensack child custody dispute to resolve?
Once an initial pleading is filed requesting the court establish child custody and parenting time orders (or a subsequent request for modification is filed), a court will generally be able to address the matter of custody and parenting time in a timely fashion. How long your dispute remains unresolved will depend on the complexity of the issues before the court and whether you and your child’s other parent can agree on a resolution to any of these issues.
Do I Need an Attorney to Represent Me?
Hackensack parents are not required to have legal counsel to address issues of child custody or parenting time with the courts, but such counsel and representation is generally advisable. Courts are required to look at certain facts and circumstances when making custody determinations: if you do not address these facts and circumstances, you will usually not experience the outcome you desire. With an attorney, you can be confident that your attorney will present the court with the facts and information the court needs to make a favorable decision.
Contact Your Hackensack Child Custody Lawyer Today
Call 1-800-537-4154 to speak with Aretsky Law Group, P.C. about your child custody objectives and legal needs.