When getting a divorce, many considerations must be taken into account. However, it can be hard to navigate and make confident decisions as you may feel the impacts of your divorce. Though you will likely feel the effects, it can be worse for children who may not fully understand what’s happening. One thing you must consider is the best interests of your child, as this will be the central focus of your custody plan. It’s important to understand that a Somerset County child custody attorney can assist during these difficult times. Keep reading to learn how to help show what’s best for your child.
What Is Meant By “Best Interests of the Child” During a Divorce?
When you and your spouse who share a child go through a divorce, the court must create a custody plan that represents the child’s best interest. It’s important to understand that this is not a rigid definition. The courts have a considerable amount of flexibility and discretion when determining what is best for the child.
Generally, when determining child custody, the courts in New Jersey will start assuming each parent is entitled to equal time with the child. However, as they review the different factors involved, the judge assigned to the case will adjust the plan accordingly. Generally, the courts will consider the following when determining how to create a custody plan for a divorcing couple:
- Who the primary caretaker of the child is
- The home environments of the parents
- Whether there are allegations of neglect or abuse against either parent
- The financial income of each parent
- The relationship between each parent and child
- Where each parent lives in relation to the child’s school and extracurricular activities
How Can I Prove This?
If you are trying to illustrate what is in the best interest of your child, it’s essential to take the necessary steps to gather evidence that shows you are a fit custodian. One of the most critical things you can do to help prove your case is to cooperate with your spouse. Unless they are physically or emotionally abusive or you have reason to believe your child is unsafe in their care, working together is crucial. The courts will appreciate your willingness to work together as it shows you prioritize what is best for your child.
Additionally, ensuring you have evidence if your spouse has not let you see your child is critical. This can include text messages or emails of them denying you visitation.
As you can see, there are many things the courts will take into consideration when determining a custody plan, as it is the job to ensure the child at the center of the divorce is prioritized and safe. It’s in your best interest to connect with an experienced attorney from the Siragusa Law Firm as soon as possible to help you through these challenging times. We will do everything in our power to fight for what’s best for your family. Contact us today to learn how we can assist you.