Temporary Child Custody
Any time two parents divorce, whether it is ultimately resolved through mediation, arbitration, negotiation, or litigation, part of their final divorce settlement will include a child custody and visitation agreement. However, many times the issue of where the children live and when they visit with both parents can be very unclear or contentious during the divorce process itself before the issue of child custody can be resolved.
When this is the case, either parent may request that the courts perform an analysis and issue a court order addressing the issue of temporary child custody during divorce.
If you are requesting a temporary child custody hearing, or your former spouse has requested a temporary custody hearing, as with any divorce matter, it is highly recommended that you retain the counsel of an experienced divorce attorney to guide and advise you throughout the process, and help you secure the resolutions which best meet your unique needs and concerns, and the unique needs and concerns of your children.
At Jacobs Berger, our family law attorneys have extensive experience finding creative and constructive solutions to family law and divorce matters of all kinds for clients in towns across New Jersey and Morris County, including Madison, Randolph, Denville, Florham Park, Hanover, Morris Township, and Morristown.
Call our office to speak with our attorney team today in a comprehensive and confidential Strategic Planning Session regarding your divorce, your child custody and visitation agreement, or a temporary child custody matter during your divorce process.
Deciding Temporary Child Custody during a Divorce
As previously noted, any time one parent or the other wishes for there to be a clear and well-defined child custody and visitation agreement during their divorce process itself, they can request the courts to hold a temporary custody hearing. Importantly, the parent who initially requests the temporary custody hearing is not given any preference or advantage by the courts when it comes to making their decision regarding temporary child custody during a divorce.
As part of a temporary custody hearing, as with any matter concerning children in New Jersey, the first and most important factor the courts will consider is that of the best interests of the children involved. This means that the courts will weigh factors such as:
- Which parent has traditionally been the primary caregiver to the children
- The financial and emotional status of both parents and how they might affect their ability to provide for their children during their divorce
- The ability of either parent to provide for any special needs, talents, or interests the children may have
- In cases where the courts believe the children are of the age and maturity to express them, the preferences of the children themselves
After considering these factors, and how they will affect the best interests of the children, the courts will typically grant one parent or the other primary custody of their children during the divorce process, while still seeking to find a visitation schedule which allows the children to maintain their relationships with the non-custodial parent.
How Will a Temporary Custody Decision Affect my Final Child Custody Agreement?
Perhaps the most pressing question any parent will have when it comes to a temporary custody decision, is if, and how, a temporary custody decision can affect their final child custody agreement.
The simple answer is that any temporary custody arrangement the court orders during your divorce will not affect your final child custody agreement. It will not matter which parent was granted primary custody, nor will the temporary visitation arrangement impact a court’s final ruling.
However, a temporary custody decision will certainly give both parents an indication of how the courts may ultimately rule if it is required that the court decides the final child custody agreement, rather than the parents and their attorneys reaching an agreement through negotiation or some other divorce alternative.
If a court’s temporary custody decision leaves you concerned over your parental future or custodial rights, it is important that you begin working with our divorce and child custody attorneys as quickly as possible so that we can begin the negotiation process, and help you reach a final child custody agreement which more accurately reflects your needs and rights as a parent, and allows you to have a much closer relationship with your children than your current temporary custody agreement provides for.
Contact Our Divorce and Child Custody Attorneys Today
At Jacobs Berger, our attorneys have extensive experience helping our clients and their families to resolve family law matters and divorce issues such as child custody, child support, alimony, and marital asset division across New Jersey.
The unique approach of our firm focuses on finding constructive solutions which protect the relationships and financial stability our clients have worked so hard to build, rather than pursuing unnecessary, contentious, and expensive courtroom litigation. While we are of course ready to aggressively defend the rights and future of any of our clients in a court of law, we will always first seek to resolve their legal matters through negotiation and open and honest communication.
To speak with our attorney team today in a comprehensive and confidential Strategic Planning Session regarding your divorce, your child custody agreement, or a temporary child custody issue, please contact us online, or through our Morristown, NJ office at (973) 710-4366.