How are they different?

Divorcing parents often come to court seeking CUSTODY over their child without realizing that the term actually has two meanings; Legal custody and Residential custody.  Legal custody relates mostly with the rearing of the child, more specifically, the medical, educational, and spiritual upbringing.  Residential custody, on the other hand, deals specifically with which parent the child will physically reside.  While usually mentioned in conjunction, both provide the parents with varying degrees of responsibility and rights.

Residential and Legal custody Attorneys Toms River NJ

Within the two definitions, there are multiple variations which provide parents the ability to design the best custody and parenting time arraignment to fit their particular needs.  Inside of the Legal custody umbrella there are two options:  Joint Legal custody and Sole Legal custody.  In New Jersey, Joint Legal custody provides both parents with the right to be involved in the decision making of their child.  Both parties are required to confer as to the major decisions in the child’s life and come to a joint decision.  Sole Legal custody is vastly different, this terminates the decision making right of the non-legal custodian and allows the legal custodian to make all decisions pertaining to the child.

Sole Legal custody is rarely awarded as there is a presumption that having both parents involved in the decision making process is in the child’s best interest.  Sole Legal Custody is sometimes ordered when a parent is deemed physically or mentally unable to meet the demands of child-rearing, or the court finds it to be against the best interest of the child to order same.

Ocean County Custody Determination Lawyers

In making a custody determination, the court takes into consideration certain enumerated factors set forth in New Jersey Statute 9:2-4(c).  Said factors are used as a guidepost to help assist Judges when determining what is in the “best interest of the child”.  At the end of the day, a Judge will never make a ruling against the best interest of the child, however, it is not always black or white as to what is deemed to be in the child’s best interest.

Contact Our Brick NJ Law Firm Today for a Free Case Evaluation

The Bronzino Law Firm is committed to providing the best quality representation for residents of Monmouth and Ocean Counties.  If you are facing a suit for child custody, contact us today at (732) 856-5730.  We have extensive experience in custody related matters and can review your case with you.