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Silhouette of a family divided onto two torn pieces of paper, representing child custody issues in New Jersey with a mother and child on one side, and a father and child on the other.

Will a Substance Abuse Issue Affect Child Custody in New Jersey?

If you are someone who is currently fighting for child custody and either you or your former spouse has a substance abuse issue, you must continue reading and speak with our knowledgeable Ocean City family law attorney to learn more about how this may affect your divorce. Here are some of the questions you may have:

What are the two primary types of child custody in New Jersey?

Child custody can be broken down into two main categories: physical and legal custody. Essentially, physical custody refers mainly to where your child will be living, while legal custody refers to your legal right, as a parent, to make important life decisions on behalf of your child. Generally, although parents always want to be the ones living with their child, our firm will advise clients to fight for legal custody, at the very least. Some examples of key life decisions legal custody allows parents to make can include where the child will go to school, what religion the child practices, and the kind of medical treatment your child is allowed to receive.

How do New Jersey courts determine child custody?

Generally, New Jersey courts do prefer to split child custody evenly between parents, allowing the child to spend an even amount of time with each parent. That being said, of course, this does not always happen. New Jersey courts will base their decision regarding your child custody agreement on the best interests of your child. For this very reason, they will consider a wide array of factors, including, though not limited to:

  • You and your former spouse’s ability to financially support the child
  • Whether you and your former spouse can adequately raise your child
  • Whether you and your former spouse live in close proximity to one another
  • Your child’s age and health
  • Whether your child has any special needs
  • If your child is old/mature enough, whether he or she has a preference

That being said, there are certain circumstances that may warrant one parent to have sole custody of a child. For example, if you or your spouse exposed your child to domestic violence or substance abuse, there is a very good chance this will drastically impact the outcome of your child custody agreement. If your spouse is claiming you have a substance abuse issue, you absolutely require the services of an experienced New Jersey family law attorney who can work to disprove those allegations, or to demonstrate to the court that you are taking all of the necessary actions to correct the issue.

For further questions about child custody or child support in New Jersey, give us a call or contact us online today.

Contact our experienced Ocean City, New Jersey firm

Matters of divorce and family law require the attention and skill of an experienced attorney who will fight for your future. Not only is your financial well-being at stake, but in a divorce, both you and your children’s emotional well-being are at risk as well. If you need a divorce and family law attorney in Ocean County, New Jersey, please do not hesitate to contact the Law Office of Sarina Gianna, LLC today to schedule a consultation.