Edward R. Weinstein, Esq.Edward R. Weinstein, Esq.

Family Law Involving Children in East Brunswick

When discussing New Jersey child custody laws and how it affects an individual’s case, an attorney will disclose the five big factors. These include custody, parenting time, child support, medical insurance, and payment of college. 

With respect to child custody, a majority of cases are resolved in joint, legal custody. This means that the parents have equal say over all major decisions regarding the child.

These are just a few of the issues involved when discussing family law involving children in East Brunswick. To better understand these nuances, an individual should be sure to consult with a knowledgeable child custody attorney as soon as possible.

Custody Issues

There are various custody issues at play when discussing family law involving children in East Brunswick. Residential or physical custody is where the child lives with one parent, and that parent will be the physical custodial parent or parent of alternate resident as it is called in New Jersey.

However, there are cases where the parents enjoy joint residential or physical child custody and parenting time arrangement.

Parenting Time

It is important to note that when talking about custody or overnight parenting time for the parent and child in question, a parent could discuss a variety of factors. For example, one parent may have the ability to work from home and have the child with them every day while the other parent goes to work. However, every night, the child may go back to the other parent. In that case, the overnight parent is still the parent of primary resident.

They are still the residential custodial parent because the law states that overnight parenting time is essential for child-parent bonding. Therefore, it is something that is extremely important when making these determinations.

Custody dictates how a parenting time schedule may look, not with respect to specific details, but with respect to the big picture.

When understanding parenting issues with family law involving children in East Brunswick, it is important that a person consult with an attorney.

Child Support

Child support is primarily based on each parent’s respective incomes. However, there are many other factors, such as how many over nights a parent may have over the course of the year. That does not include vacation time, just regular parenting time.

Of the big five issues, parenting, child support, and overnight parenting time are some of the many factors involved with determining the child’s best interest. Other factors include health insurance, payments, and daycare expenses when determining the correct amount of child support.

It is significant to note that if one parent is the parent of primary resident, the parent of alternate resident is basically an every other weekend parent. This means they would have custody of the child on Friday and Saturday night, which would equate to 52 overnights a year. That parent would get credit for those 52 nights. It is built into New Jersey’s child support guidelines.

If the two parents have true equal shared parenting time, a custody agreement, or court order, child support will not exist. For example, if each parent makes approximately the same amount of money, it would be a case that the child support would likely not go to either parent.

However, if one parent greatly out-earns the other parent, they will pay much less than the joint physical residential situation. This is an important factor to consider when discussing family law involving children in East Brunswick.

Medical Insurance

Child support is heavily affected by what the custody and parenting time situation will be. Medical insurance is straightforward. The courts are going to order both parents to be responsible and to make sure that their children have health insurance.

If they cannot afford health insurance, the court or the lawyers will instruct the parents to seek assistance from the State of New Jersey, which will provide free health insurance for children.

The parents are still responsible for themselves. If it was a divorce situation and one spouse carried the entire family on their health insurance provided by their employer, then after the divorce, each parent would be responsible for their own medical insurance. Medical insurance is a big factor when understanding family law involving children in East Brunswick.

Both parents are responsible to help pay for the child’s medical insurance. For example, if one parent is going to cover the child, a lawyer will find out what the difference is between what it is going to cost them out of pocket for an individual policy versus how much more it is going to cost them to have that family policy.

An attorney will take that difference, which gets built into the New Jersey child support guidelines, so both parties are fulfilling their legal obligation to provide medical insurance for the child.

Payment of College

New Jersey is one of the very few states that compel divorced parents to pay for their child’s college education if they end up divorced. Under a joint legal custody situation, both parents have equal say with respect to deciding what college the child will attend.

Very often, applications are made through the Superior Court of New Jersey, because the parties cannot agree, especially if college expenses continue to skyrocket.

The lead case with respect to payment of college in the State of New Jersey is a case called Newburgh, which says that both parents must pay based upon their "ability to pay". For most families, Newburgh means that the child will get all loans, aid, rent, and anything they can to defray on college expenses.

To better understand how these expenses can impact an individual’s divorce case, an individual should be sure to consult with an attorney as soon as possible.