Is it Difficult to Win Child Custody as a Father in New Jersey?
As a dedicated father, the thought of losing your children after a divorce can be quite distressing. Putting aside all of the emotional strife that goes along with ending a relationship, many fathers put the well-being of their children first. You may be worried about leaving your children with their mother for whatever reason. Or perhaps you are concerned that their mother will simply exclude you from your children’s lives going forward. Whatever the case may be, many fathers strive to win child custody battles after divorces in New Jersey.
Perhaps the most important question you have at this point is simple: How difficult will it be for me to win a child custody battle? You may have heard that it is much easier for mothers to win custody and that judges tend to favor mothers with a strong bias. Is this really true? If you have questions such as these, it is always best to consult with a legal expert who has decades of experience in family law cases. That being said, there is no harm in learning about how New Jersey handles father’s rights.
New Jersey Has No Gender Bias
According to New Jersey law, both spouse’s rights are taken into account when determining custody after a divorce. The law clearly states that both mothers and fathers stand on equal footing and that no preference should be given to either gender. This is good news for fathers across the state — as long as they can prove paternity, of course.
Unfortunately, this ethos of gender neutrality does not always fully materialize in court. Judges still have inherent biases, and some are more likely to award custody to mothers – whether they are consciously aware of it or not.
Winning Joint Custody
New Jersey recognizes that each parent plays an important role in raising children. Because of this, most fathers will probably have the highest levels of success if they aim for joint custody rather than sole custody. That being said, achieving joint custody is by no means easy. The judge will take a variety of factors into account as they try to determine what is in the child’s best interests.
A number of factors may be taken into account, such as:
- History of abuse
- Earning power
- The preference of the children
- The mental stability of both spouses
It is worth pointing out that fathers often earn more than their female counterparts, which can give them a notable edge in child custody battles.
Winning Sole Custody
Winning sole custody as a father is also possible, but only under certain circumstances. Generally speaking, the mother has to have done something seriously concerning to completely lose the custody battle. This includes a history of abusing the children, substance abuse issues, or criminal offenses.
You are Always Guaranteed Visitation Rights
It is important to remember that as a father, you are always guaranteed visitation rights, no matter what. Even if you do not win joint custody, the courts will usually provide you with a considerable amount of time to spend with your children each week. If your spouse or anyone else is trying to prevent you from spending time with your children, seek legal help immediately.
Find Quality Legal Help
Having an expert attorney by your side always increases your chances of achieving a favorable outcome in your custody battle. Reach out to Giro, LLP, Attorneys at Law today, and we will fight for your rights as a father.