When parents are going through a divorce, their biggest concern is their children. This includes settling matters of custody and parenting time. While custody determines a number of things about a parent’s right to their children, a parenting time agreement outlines when they are able to spend time with the children. Oftentimes, this will include certain holidays. If your parenting time agreement does not and you want to be with your child for an upcoming holiday, continue reading below and contact a New Jersey family law attorney for assistance.
What are Types of Custody Agreements?
In New Jersey, there are two types of custody agreements that are granted: physical custody and legal custody. When a parent is granted physical custody, they are the individual with whom the child spends the majority of their time with. If a parent has legal custody of their child, they have the right to be involved in making decisions related to this child’s upbringing. This can include matters such as education, medical case, religion, etc.
When the court decides custody, they usually want both parents to be in the child’s life. It is because of this that shared custody is often granted. However, the first priority is the best interest of the child. In order to determine what is in a child’s best interest, the court will consider the following factors:
- The relationship both parents have with their child
- If a parent was involved in criminal activity, have a substance abuse problem, or have exposed the child to domestic abuse
- The child’s needs, including both physical and emotional
- The child’s educational needs
- If the child is of sufficient age to state their preference
- The geographical proximity of both parent’s homes
- Whether a parent can support the child’s standard of living
- Whether the parent can provide the child with a stable and safe home
What do I do if a Holiday is Not in my Custody Agreement?
When holidays come around, parents typically want to spend them with their children. However, if they are divorced, this may be difficult. If a parent wants to be with their child on a certain holiday that is not in their parenting time agreement, there are steps that can be taken. First, it is a good idea to simply discuss the matter with the other parent to see if they would be okay with swapping their parenting time for the date.I f this does not work, it is possible to petition the court for a post-judgment modification. This allows changes to be made to the document so that a parent can their child on the specific date, such as a holiday. When a parent asks for a modification, they are required to prove there is a significant change in circumstances that calls for the modification.
Contact our Firm
We understand that those getting a divorce most likely have several questions regarding the weeks and months to come. Paris P. Eliades Law Firm, LLC is honored to serve the people of New Jersey, including Sparta, Sussex County, Morris County, Passaic County, and Bergen County with the quality legal services they deserve. If you are getting a divorce or have any other questions regarding divorce-related matters, please do not hesitate to contact our firm for a consultation today.