Q) What Happens If We Reach A Custody Agreement?
A) In New Jersey, if the Court grants you sole physical custody of your child, then your child lives with you and not with the other parent. Joint physical custody is where your child lives with both you and the other parent, splitting her/his time between both homes. When there is joint physical custody arrangement, both parents share the rights of making day-to-day decisions about your child and the responsibilities of caring for your child. In order for joint physical custody to be a viable option the parties must have the ability to communicate well with one another (have a good relationship with one another) as well as reside in close proximity to one another. In a joint physical custodial arrangement both parents will be responsible for the feeding of the child, bathing the child, arranging medical care for the child, participating in your child’s education and putting the child to bed at night. Because parents with joint physical custody usually have joint legal custody as well, it also means that both parents share the right to make major decisions about your child. Here are some examples of joint physical custody:
- Your child spends 3 days a week with you, and 4 days a week with the other parent.
- Your child spends one week, month or year with you and then the next week, month or year with the other parent.
- If you have physical custody and the other parent has visitation rights (parenting time), then this is not joint physical custody. This is true even if the other parent has a large amount of visitation time.