When children are involved in a divorce, it can significantly impact their lives. Their parents must determine an entirely new future for them. This involves settling child custody and support arrangements. When custody is determined, it establishes a child’s custodial and non-custodial parent. Neither title makes one parent more important than the other. Both have different responsibilities that make them valuable in their child’s life.

Child Custody

Parents can obtain physical and legal custody during divorce proceedings. When a parent has physical custody, they are considered the custodial parent. This makes the other parent the non-custodial parent.  It is important to know that the child does still spend time in the home of the non-custodial parent as well. The amount of time spent can be designated during divorce proceedings.

Parents can still obtain legal custody of their child even if they do not have physical custody. Legal custody is in regard to a different aspect of a child’s life. When a parent has legal custody of their child, it allows them to have influence over the important matters of their upbringing. This can include healthcare, education, religion, general well-being, and more.

Child Support

In the state of New Jersey, both parents are required to financially assist their child after a divorce. It is because of this that non-custodial parents must pay child support to the custodial parent. This allows them to balance out the child’s cost of living between the two of them. This money goes towards all matters relating to the upbringing and betterment of the child. This can include food, clothing, education, and more. By maintaining support from both parents, the child can be provided with the standard of living they were used to before their parents divorced.

Child support is determined by a judge. In order for a judge to reach a decision regarding the matter, they consider several different factors in relation to the family. This can include the needs of the child in addition to the financial situation of each parent. With this information, the judge is able to set an amount for support payments based upon the family’s personal situation.

Can these Arrangements Change?

When judges determine custody and support arrangements, they do so in the best interest of the child. Judges do their best to place the child in an environment that allows them to have a stable and happy upbringing. However, a child’s best interests and family situation can change over time. It is because of this that modifications can be made to a settlement agreement. This allows them to be adjusted to fit a family’s new situation.

Contact our Firm

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