Haddon Heights Visitation Rights Attorney

Firm represents New Jersey parents

Usually after a breakup, it is best for both parents to have frequent, meaningful contact with their children. However, working out the details can be difficult. At The Law Offices of Kelli M. Martone in Haddon Heights, I am an accomplished New Jersey family lawyer who safeguards the visitation rights of clients and seeks to develop fair, comprehensive parenting plans.

Parenting plans

When possible, parties to a divorce should try to work out a parenting plan that sets forth terms relating to residence, legal authority and visitation. My firm can help you understand your options and see that issues such as transportation between homes are addressed. If you can reach consensus, the judge will review the terms to ensure that they are age-appropriate and in your children’s best interests. Unless the judge has an objection, the parenting plan will form the basis of the visitation order.

Terms relating to holidays, school breaks and decision-making

Your parenting plan should contain clear terms discussing:

  • Holidays — A standard visitation schedule calls for a division of holidays during a given year, with parents switching their slate of holidays annually. Therefore, one year a child might spend Memorial Day in their mother’s home and the Fourth of July in their father’s home. In the next year, the child would be with their father on Memorial Day and their mother on the Fourth of July.
  • School breaks — Summer vacations and other school breaks are great times for parents lacking physical custody to spend time with their sons and daughters. My firm strives to find a solution that suits all parties well.
  • Major life choices — Typically, joint legal custody is granted in a divorce, which means that both parents have a say in major decisions affecting their child regardless of who has visitation at a given time. These can include issues relating education, medical treatment and religious upbringing.
  • Everyday decisions — It is too unwieldy to have both parents collaborate on everyday choices such as where to eat and how to spend leisure time. Whichever parent is with the child at the time has the authority to handle these routine decisions.

My personalized approach to each case helps clients create a framework that is tailored to their situation and needs.

Third-party visitation

Some visitation concerns relate to grandparents’ rights, as well as the attempts of other loved ones, such as aunts, uncles and siblings, to have access to children. Whether this type of visitation is ordered is highly dependent on the specific case facts. 

Modifying parenting plans

A parenting plan is designed to create a stable environment for young people and their parents. Accordingly, a substantial change in circumstances must be shown for a court to authorize a modification. If you and your co-parent agree to a change, a proposed consent order can be submitted to the judge. My firm also represents parties in proceedings where a proposed custody or visitation modification is contested.

Supervised visitation and visitation interference

Parents who have had problems with violence, substance abuse or illegal activity might put their children at risk if no one else is present. Still, maintaining a strong parent-child bond is often in everyone’s best interests. Supervised visitation sometimes is the best solution. Under this arrangement, the noncustodial parent spends time with their son and daughter while another family member or someone working within the New Jersey Courts system is present. 

Violations of visitation orders could trigger serious punishment, including criminal charges. Anyone who interferes with the parenting time schedule by preventing their ex from seeing the child they share might also be subject to monetary penalties and adverse revisions to the existing custody and visitation terms.

Contact a New Jersey family attorney for a consultation about visitation terms   

The Law Offices of Kelli M. Martone in Haddon Heights represents parents in matters relating to visitation terms. To make an appointment, please call 856-432-4587 or contact me online.