What parenting time interferences can be crimes in New Jersey?

On Behalf of | Aug 4, 2023 | Child Custody |

Child custody matters are essential to divorce, significantly affecting the children’s lives. They might need stability and proper care during and after the divorce, necessitating the court to finalize a parenting plan, indicating the time each party can spend with their child. It might seem like a simple list of schedules and parental responsibilities, but it is more than that.

These plans are enforceable documents approved by the court, so any intentional obstruction to their implementation could be a violation. The court could consider the following as parenting time interference, depending on the circumstances:

  • Taking and hiding the child to deprive a party of their designated parenting time
  • Taking the child after learning of potential changes to the child custody order 
  • Taking the child after learning about possible protective service requirements related to the child custody case
  • Abducting the child from the other party, deliberately violating the order

Committing these offenses could have severe penalties, including extensive fines and up to five years of jail time. However, some misunderstandings or incidents of miscommunication could easily lead to allegations of interference. Each party must be open to collaboration to avoid these mistakes, especially if they have flexible arrangements.

Openly communicating to resolve parenting time issues

After divorce, parents might need transparency and honesty more than ever. Failing to carry out child custody orders could have grave consequences. Being flexible and open to changes could address most parenting time issues. However, some concerns could be too significant to allow, especially if they endanger the child’s welfare. If so, filing an incident report or complaint might be necessary. These violations could lead to various remedies deemed appropriate by the court after assessing the situation.

A divorce ends the marriage but not the parent’s duties to their child. Parenting plans and accompanying court orders prove that the law encourages parent-child relationships, allowing the child to thrive as they grow into adults.