With child custody arrangements, there are two main types of custody. These consist of physical custody and legal custody. Physical custody decides where the child will spend more time living per week. This parent will then be known as the custodial parent, meaning that they will have more time with their child on a weekly basis since the child will reside with them most of the time. However, the other party may be able to maintain consistent access to the child and nights of their own where the child can stay with them in their home. The best cases have shown parents working together to accommodate the child’s interests in any way possible. They also can work together to make sure that they are both receiving the time they need with their child to maintain a healthy relationship.

Legal custody grants parents with the authority to make important decisions in a child’s life. These decisions can be related to matters of health, education, religion and general welfare of the child. A parent may lose physical custody, but still be able to obtain legal custody. Even if a parent loses physical custody of a child, they may be entitled to visitation rights and parenting time. If they are given legal custody, this still allows them to be involved in major decisions.

What are factors that influence child custody arrangements?

When child custody arrangements are brought to court, judges will decide on the final outcome. When a judge decides on a child custody case, they make sure to take all factors into consideration to protect the best interests of the child. Some factors can include the parent’s inclination to accept custody, the child’s safety, the child’s needs, any domestic abuse in the past, the distance between the parents’ homes, the relationship the child has with each parent, the preference the child has when of a sufficient age, the stability of each home life and the ability of the parent to act in the child’s best interests.

Why can child custody arrangements be adjusted?

As divorced spouses continue their lives without one another, their circumstances can change in life. This can have the ability to disrupt their current child custody arrangements with their former spouse. It may also lead them to seek a new arrangement that better fits the new terms of their life or the child’s life. A modification to the agreed upon child custody arrangement can be beneficial for all parties involved.

Since judges can only consider the present factors when making original custody arrangements, modifications may need to be made in the future. New and changing factors can affect the effectiveness of a child custody arrangement. No one involved in the case is aware of what might happen in the next few months or years. They also may not be aware of the effect of the original custody arrangement. If a parent notices their child is negatively reacting to a current child custody arrangement, they may wish to get it modified. A parent may believe that the child’s interactions with their other parent are having a bad influence on the child. They can involve the court and get a judge to act in the best interests of the child.

If you require strong legal representation for matters of divorce and family law in New Jersey, contact The Law Offices of Paone, Zaleski & Murphy to schedule a consultation with one of our experienced attorneys today.