Manalapan Child Custody and Support

Family Law Lawyers Assisting Manalapan Residents

Manalapan is a township in Monmouth County with a population of about 39,000 people. Of 13,263 households there in 2010, nearly 40% included minor children. Many divorcing couples must consider child custody issues related to where their children will live, who will make decisions for them, and how much support they may need. At Goldstein Law Group, our Manalapan child custody attorneys can advise you on these critical matters.

New Jersey Guidelines for Determining Child Custody and Support

The best interests of a child are of paramount concern to the court. Factors that a New Jersey court may consider when determining child custody include the relationship between the child and his or her parents and siblings, each parent's willingness to work together, each parent's willingness to take custody, how fit a parent each parent is, the geographical closeness of the parents' homes, the age and number of children, the child's preference if he or she is sufficiently mature and intelligent, and the stability of the home.

In some cases, it is possible for parents to discuss the child's best interests and arrive at a custody arrangement. They will have to consider both physical and legal custody. "Physical custody" means how much time each parent will spend with the child, and whose residence will be the child's "primary residence." "Legal custody" means the authority to make important decisions for a child, such as decisions related to education, medical care, and religion. Any arrangement agreed to by the parents will have to be approved by the court, which will be looking to see if the arrangement appropriately accounts for the child's emotional and physical welfare. A child custody lawyer can assist Manalapan residents with arguing for the viability of their arrangement.

When discussing and negotiating custody with your soon-to-be ex-spouse, you should be aware that the custody arrangement may affect the amount of child support that must be paid. Child support is financial support paid by one parent to the other in order to meet a child's basic needs, such as clothes, food, health care, and education. Typically, the parent with more parenting time receives the child support, but the support does not belong to the parent. It belongs to the child. If parents have equal overnight time with the child, the court will take this into account in calculating child support.

After a divorce, one or both spouses may experience significant changes that may call for a modification of child support. Either parent can ask the court for a modification to the child support order. The standard for modifying the order is whether a parent has experienced changed circumstances. The changes must be unanticipated, substantial, and permanent. Once these are proved, the other parent will need to provide his or her current financial information. For example, if you are in a car accident and become disabled and are unable to work, you may not be able to pay child support at the same rate you could previously, and a request for modification might be appropriate.

Consult a Child Custody Attorney in the Manalapan Area

Child custody and support can make a divorce contentious. The Manalapan child custody lawyers at Goldstein Law Group maintain a sophisticated practice helping parents advocate for their children's best interests. In some cases, the best interests of children from the same home are different. Our family law attorneys can help you negotiate with your children's other parent or take a case to court. Contact us for a consultation at 732-967-6777 or via our online form.