When a married couple with children decides to get divorced, child custody is one of the most challenging and emotional matters they will face. This life-changing decision can significantly impact a parent’s relationship with their child. Many parents cannot reach a mutual decision regarding custody outside of the courtroom. In such cases, the court will examine several factors to devise a custody arrangement that best serves a child’s best interests. When the decision falls into the court’s lap, many parents worry that their income or financial stability will impact the court’s decision. Please continue reading to learn how a parent’s financial stability can impact a custody decision and how our trusted Monmouth County Child Custody Attorneys can help you today.
How does a parent’s financial stability impact custody decisions in New Jersey?
Firstly, it is imperative to understand that the court will never automatically grant custody to a parent during a divorce. Instead, a judge will carefully examine several factors to determine which custody arrangement best suits the child’s needs. The court recognizes the need to safeguard a child’s emotional, mental, and physical well-being. As such, the court uses the “best interests” of the child standard to establish a custody arrangement that is best for the child’s life and well-being rather than what the parents may want. Numerous factors are considered when determining a child’s best interests. The following include but are not limited to some of those factors:
- The age of the child
- Whether the child has special needs
- Each parent’s ability to meet the children’s individual needs
- Each parent’s relationship with the child
- Each parent’s willingness to support each other’s relationship with their children
- Each parent’s living situation
- Each parent’s earning capacity
- The proximity between each parent’s home to the child’s school and one another
- Parental preference, if old enough to make a decision based on sound reasoning
- Any history of substance abuse, criminal convictions, domestic violence, or neglect
While a parent’s financial stability is a factor in custody decisions, the courts will ultimately decide based on what is in the child’s best interests. However, if a parent cannot meet the child’s needs, such as providing them with a safe and stable living environment due to their lack of income, that will significantly impact a custody decision. The court will only grant custody to a parent if they can provide a safe living environment for the child.
If you are currently facing a custody battle, it is in your best interest to contact an experienced attorney from the legal team at Paone Zaleski & Murphy, who will aggressively fight for you and your family. Our firm is prepared to represent your interests and help you protect your child’s best interest.