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You may assume that, as a father, you are at a disadvantage when it comes to child custody orders. This is not to say, however, that you do not have rights. Follow along to find out whether men can get primary custody of their child and how a proficient Sussex County, Sparta fathers’ rights attorney at Paris P. Eliades, Esq. can fight on your behalf to eliminate this bias placed against you.

What are father rights in the state of New Jersey?

Importantly, the New Jersey family courts are directed to pass judgment that is “gender blind.” Meaning, the court is discouraged from awarding custody rights to a mother over a father solely based on their gender. This is because they should refer to the belief that fathers should have the same consideration as mothers when it comes to the importance of their relationship with their child. And so, the court should work toward a child custody arrangement that is in the best interest of the child and that maintains a close, healthy relationship with both parents.

Do men ever get primary or sole custody of a child?

Unfortunately, still, only 17 percent of single parents with physical and legal custody over their children are men. This means that New Jersey family courts still tend to prefer to grant custody to mothers in cases where a shared physical custody arrangement is impossible.

Nonetheless, if you are involved in highly-contested child custody proceedings, it is important that you understand the custody rights that you should be fighting for. They are as follows:

  • Physical custody: the right to have your child live with you more often than they live with your former spouse.
  • Legal custody: the right to make important legal decisions for your child, such as which school they will attend and which religion they will practice, along with medical decisions.

If you have remained amicable with your former spouse, you should attempt to negotiate a joint custody agreement with them, via mediation or otherwise. But if you cannot obtain shared physical custody, then you should at the very least fight for legal custody. And if you cannot obtain legal custody, you should at the very least try for visitation rights.

However, you should not settle for anything less than you deserve. We understand just how valuable the paternal relationship is for your child, which is why we will do everything in our power to protect it. So, as soon as you get the chance, retain the services of one of the talented Sparta, NJ children and parenting issues attorneys to represent you in your contested divorce proceedings.