The following will constitute abusive behavior that will cause a parent to lose custody, if a custody action is brought by the co-parent: Physical abuse, including sexual abuse, of a child will result in loss of custody. Emotional Abuse If you are in New Jersey, the Law Office of Katherine K. Wagner can help you with your child custody or parenting time case. If the parent was never a primary caretaker, the judge will consider the eight factors and render a decision by the totality of circumstances. Any kind of violence in the home is a negative factor when the court is deciding who should have custody of the child. Even so, a judge may order supervised visitation to ensure that the child is not put at risk. If a mother, or a father, is determined to be unfit, they will lose custody of their child. Physical and Legal Custody are often shared. The abusive co-parent can go to the court and claim parental alienation, which can get them custody of the child. Five Ways a Mother Can Lose Custody of Her Child, factors to determine if a parent should be awarded visitation. It is the mother’s job to protect her child, and allowing someone to stay in the home who is violent is not doing so. In contested custody cases the Court will often appoint a Guardian Ad Litem to represent the interests of the child(ren), conduct an investigation and file a written recommendation with the Court. The statues provide no guidance for what constitutes “appropriate parenting time”, and this is a frequent spark of litigation. The relationship between child and parent. Conviction for murder, manslaughter, or aggravated manslaughter of a child – and aiding and abetting , conspiring, or soliciting someone to commit these crimes – will also result in loss of custody of the surviving children, not to mention termination of parental rights. Parents who don’t cooperate in this process can and do lose custody of their children. This applies not only to physical … Remember: Among married couples, fathers and mothers have the same rights for child custody regardless of their genders — at least until there is a court order that maintains otherwise. If a parent violates the custody order, this can result in loss of custody if the violation is serious or pervasive enough. This lack of a secure environment puts the child at risk of suffering emotional, psychological, or physical harm. For example, if the mother has attempted suicide in the past or has any type of severe mental illness, the court may deem her unfit to have custody, and instead provide it to the co-parent. The child lives with both parents, and both have the ability to make decisions about their child’s welfare. In New Jersey there is no legal preference to award custody to a mother over a father. Some people assume that women are less likely to be physical abusers. © 2020 Katherine K. Wagner, Attorney at Law. Failure of a parent to comply with the court’s orders can lead to permanent termination of parental rights. Good moms lose custody for all sorts of reasons. We pride ourselves on being available to provide you with thorough, prompt and diligent service while handling your case. A parent with a mental disturbance, addiction to drugs or alcohol, or anger management issues may be found unfit if he or she cannot care for the child or puts the child at significant physical and/or emotional risk as a result. This field is for validation purposes and should be left unchanged. The relationship between the child’s parents, or the relationship between the person with whom the child is residing and the parent; How long ago the child last had contact with the parent; The effect that visitation will have on the relationship between the child and the parents (or the parent and the person with whom the child is residing); If the parents are divorced or separated, the time-sharing arrangement which currently exists; The good faith of the parent in filing the application for visitation; Any history of physical, emotional or sexual abuse or neglect by the parent; Any other factor relevant to the best interests of the child. This is especially true if the drug or substance abuse puts the child’s life at risk (like through drunk driving). Not addressing alcohol, drugs, or other parental fitness issues: A parent who even casually partakes … Attorney specializing in family law.