New Jersey courts see two circumstances that relocation cases will be opened for: a custodial parent seeks to move their child outside of New Jersey, or a custodial parent seeks to relocate the child within New Jersey, but far from the marital home. Continue reading to discover the differences between legal and physical custody and learn what New Jersey courts consider during relcoation court decisions. The New Jersey Supreme Court recently changed its standard for removal, making it more difficult for custodial parents to relocate without the approval of the noncustodial parent first.
It is important to gain the services of a knowledgeable and skilled family law attorney with experience fighting for relocation cases. Contact our firm today to discuss how we can assist your upcoming case. We are prepared to fight for your family, no matter your position in the case. Get started today. You do not need to go through this process alone.
Legal Custody vs Physical Custody
New Jersey custody courts make two types of custody arrangements: legal custody and physical custody. Physical custody refers to where the child lives the majority of the time and will determine the child’s custodial parent. Legal custody refers to the ability to make decisions on the child’s behalf including matters such as religious practices, medical treatment, and education. Legal custody gives parents influence on important aspects of the child’s upbringing. Legal custody also includes relocation. However, it is important to note that the parent who does not have physical custody still has the right to speak up in the event of their child’s possible relocation.
Since August of 2017, the Supreme Court of New Jersey ruled that relocation cases need to be assessed with the “best interest standard”. This new standard requires that court decisions regarding moving a child to a new location is in the best interest of the child.
Courts in New Jersey will also consider each of the following factors when making a decision regarding relocation:
- Other implications of the child and custodial parent moving
- The reasons for and against the move
- The bond between the child and each parent
- Social life
- The impact of the move on the child’s established relationships
In the circumstance that the non-custodial parent opposes the relocation of their child, the court will appoint a mental health professional to conduct an evaluation of the child and the family. This evaluation will also be considered by the court.
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Ross and Calandrillo, LLC is a full-service divorce, family, and real estate law firm located in Mountainside, New Jersey. For strong legal representation in all of your divorce or family law matters, contact Ross and Calandrillo, LLC to schedule a consultation.