What Parental Rights Do New Jersey Fathers Have

Most people have a common colloquial phrase they utter when they are facing particularly problematic situations. These phrases typically offer up an equally unpleasant situation the speaker would rather be enduring than the one they are currently facing. For our readers who are going through difficult family law issues, a colloquial phrase such as “I’d rather go through a root canal than a child custody dispute” might be an appropriate fit.

The reason we utter phrases such as this is because of the challenges we often face with family law issues. The complexity of our own state laws, coupled with conflicting laws in other states, typically result in frustration and a need to consult with an experienced lawyer. And because most people only have a basic understanding of the law before encountering a legal issue, they typically have questions for which they need answers.

One question you might be asking at this very moment is the one we are presenting in today’s post: what parental rights do New Jersey fathers have? Although it’s a topic we’ve touched on before in past posts, we realize that not all visitors to our blog are frequent readers, meaning this may be the first time they are encountering this topic. That’s why, in today’s post we’d like to go over this question.

New Jersey, much like other states, believes that children should be given the opportunity to develop and continue relationships with their parents, even after their parents have separated or divorced. The law tries to account for this by encouraging parents to share parenting time when applicable.

Once paternity is established, which is a topic we discussed in a post last month, the courts will determine whether custody should be shared or awarded to one parent over the other. A parenting plan is then established and a visitation schedule is worked out.

It’s important to point out that there is a stigma concerning fathers and their rights during child custody decisions. Some believe that fathers are not afforded the same rights as mothers and oftentimes do not receive equal treatment from the courts. Though this may appear true in some states, this isn’t the case everywhere. If you do have concerns about asserting your rights or want to make sure that you are receiving a fair judgment, then you should obtain the services of an attorney both before and during negotiations.

Source: judiciary.state.nj.us, “Parenting Time: A Child’s Rights,” Accessed March 13, 2015


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