Bergen County Father’s Rights Lawyer
While the law gives fathers in Bergen County the same rights as mothers when it comes to child custody and other issues involving their children, fathers could end up giving their rights away if they do not understand how to enforce them. If you are seeking to create or revise an agreement regarding custody, child support, or other parental issues, it may be wise to consult a Bergen County father’s rights lawyer as soon as possible.
Certain actions or statements could jeopardize your rights, so it is important to learn how to protect them. A dedicated family attorney could help you understand what is possible in your situation and work to protect your best interests.
Child Support in Bergen County
In most situations where a court orders child support, the parent of “alternate residence” makes payments to the parent providing the primary residence for the child. The amount of child support to be paid is usually set in accordance with state guidelines.
While the law presumes that the guidelines provide for appropriate support amount, an experienced father’s rights attorney in Bergen County could work to demonstrate that it would be in the best interests of the child to deviate from guidelines in a particular case. It should also be noted that since certain expenses related to education, extracurricular activities, and other such events are not covered under child support guidelines, a father’s rights lawyer could help make satisfactory arrangements for these expenses.
Protecting Father’s Rights Regarding Child Custody
The laws regarding child custody do not favor awarding custody to one parent or the other, and they also allow for joint custody. Under New Jersey Revised Statutes §9:2-4, the primary consideration in custody arrangements is the best interests of the child.
Custody in this context denotes both physical and legal custody, the former of which refers to the child’s residence. If physical custody is granted to one parent, that parent becomes the custodial parent, while the other parent is entitled to “appropriate parenting time” under N.J.R.S §9:2-4(c). When a father seeks joint custody in Bergen County, a father’s rights attorney could present evidence to show that such a shared arrangement would be in the child’s best interests and not disruptive to education and social relationships.
Alternatively, legal custody concerns the process of making decisions on behalf of the child. A party with legal custody over a child may make decisions regarding medical treatment, religious upbringing, education, and other issues. In many instances, both parents share legal custody even though only one parent holds physical custody.
If parents create their own agreement regarding custody, the court is bound to accept the arrangement unless it is not found to be in the best interests of the child. A father’s rights attorney in Bergen could assist in negotiating an agreement that meets the father’s goals while also containing terms acceptable to both parties.
A mutually agreed-upon schedule, whether for joint custody or primary custody with visitation, is often preferable to a schedule set by a judge, which may contain terms neither party wants. Experienced legal counsel may be able to help ensure that parties think ahead to consider holiday arrangements, higher education, and other issues that may be overlooked.
Contact a Bergen County Father’s Rights Attorney
It is virtually impossible to protect your rights as a father if you do not have a clear understanding of those rights, as well as the attendant responsibilities. For that reason alone, it is often wise to consult a Bergen County father’s rights lawyer for advice in situations where parents of a child are either not married or plan to end their marriage.
A knowledgeable attorney could advocate on your behalf in negotiations at all stages of proceedings, both formal and informal. Perhaps most importantly, an attorney who champions the rights of fathers could provide advice and a listening ear throughout the process, providing guidance at a difficult, confusing, and potentially frightening time in your life. Call now for a consultation to learn how a family lawyer could help protect your rights and your future.