Helping Same-Sex Couples Navigate Child Custody Matters

Since the United States Supreme Court ruled that gay marriage is a constitutional right in June 2015, New Jersey law has adapted to afford LGBT couples the same rights as heterosexual couples. As LGBT partners enjoy their newfound right to marry, some also must also, unfortunately, navigate the divorce process. As they work their way through divorce proceedings, partners with children will encounter child custody disputes.

If your LGBT family requires the services of a child custody attorney in New Jersey, you can rest assured that your case is in good hands at Law Offices of Edward R. Weinstein. Our attorneys respect and appreciate your family and can work tirelessly to help you achieve a favorable outcome to your dispute. Whether you settle the matter throughout negotiation or take it to court, we can be there for you every step of the way.

Contact us online or give us a call at (732) 246-0909 for a free consultation.

Custody Options

Regardless of whether your child was adopted or born through assisted reproduction, once parentage has been established, you have rights regarding your children. In New Jersey, all child custody decisions are made based on the child’s best interest.

A parent can have:

  • Joint legal custody – Both parents share responsibility when it comes to making decisions about the child’s care – however, the child may live primarily with one parent while the other is an alternate
  • Sole legal and physical custody – The child lives with one parent, who also has the right to make all the major decisions about the child’s care
  • Shared legal and physical custody – In this situation, both parents have equal rights regarding decision making and the child splits his/her time with each parent equally

Psychological Parent Doctrine

Sometimes, a partner in a same-sex relationship co-parents a child with the child’s natural or adoptive parent. This partner may still have parental rights to the child, even if he or she is not a legal parent. Under the “psychological parent” or “de facto parent” doctrine, New Jersey courts may grant the second parent certain custodial rights. The court will consider that partner’s role in parenting the child and assess whether you were intended to serve as a parent to the child.

Navigating LGBT child custody matters can be confusing – retain the services of a New Jersey child custody lawyer fromLaw Offices of Edward R. WeinsteinLaw Offices of Edward R. Weinstein. Call us at (732) 246-0909 today.