What should I know about custody?

One of the questions that clients ask most frequently is, what is custody? When a couple with children makes the decision to get a divorce, custody is often times, one of the most emotional situations a family will go through. One parent who is used to seeing their child or children every day may only get to see them once every few weeks. This can be devastating for both a parent and a child. However, the courts in New Jersey like to try and allow a parent to maintain the relationship that they have with their child, even after a divorce has taken place.

Custody basically handles two different issues, legal custody on one hand and residential custody on the other. Legal custody is a parent’s right to be involved in the decision-making process of the child’s life. It gives the parent the right to speak to the child’s teachers, doctors, counselors, and so forth, and determine the progress the child is making. On the other hand, residential custody primarily relates to the parent with whom the child resides on a day to day basis. The other parent is said to be the non-custodial parent or the non-residential parent, and they have parenting time or visitation. In some instances, the visitation may have to be supervised by a member of the court or by a family member who has volunteered to attend each visitation session.

If you have questions about creating a custody agreement or modifying a current custody agreement, contact an experienced divorce and family law attorney who can assess your situation and provide you with assistance.

The Radol Law Firm is proud to serve the people of New Jersey in their divorce and family law, elder law, estate planning, and bankruptcy matters. Contact our firm today to schedule a consultation.