Old Bridge, NJ -- (SBWIRE) -- 07/17/2014 -- The Superior Court of New Jersey Appellate Division has ruled the trial judge in a child custody case erred by declining jurisdiction in a child custody case where the parents had an established property settlement agreement that stipulated New Jersey would retain jurisdiction over issues related to child custody. Goldstein Bachman and Newman Attorneys at Law, representing the plaintiff-appellant, view this as an important victory for all parents who rely on custody agreements to maintain fair and amicable arrangements in sharing time with their children.
On May 3, 2012, the couple in question's marriage was legally dissolved in the courts. At that time, a property settlement agreement was established that included detailed requirements for how time with the couple's four children would be shared. The PSA stipulated that the mother would be free to remove the children to live in Brighton, Ontario, Canada. The father's consent to removal, however, was based on the mother's "express[ed] and irrevocabl[e] consent," that New Jersey would retain exclusive jurisdiction in all matters pertaining to child custody, support, and parenting time until their youngest child was emancipated.
Just four months after the mother and children relocated to Canada, the matter was back in the courts because the father was not receiving the parenting time specified in the agreement. Due to other legal issues, he was not able to enter Canada for his allocated time, and turned to the courts for relief. Initially, the trial judge in New Jersey declined jurisdiction and ruled the matter would be more appropriately handled in Ontario, based on the Uniform Child Custody Jurisdiction and Enforcement Act. On February 19, 2014, however, the Superior Court of New Jersey's Appellate Division ruled that he erred in this decision, and reversed the jurisdictional ruling. The full text of the appellate court's decision is available at www.goldsteinbachman.com/wp-content/uploads/2014/03/PRESS-RELEASE-appeal-approved-for-publ.pdf
According to Howard Bachman, "We always encourage our clients in custody and parenting matters to try to come to an amicable agreement. It's better for their relationship as co-parents and spares both them and their children from going through the stress of the trial. I'm happy the court has decided to uphold the agreement our client had in this case. People need to know that when they're signing such an agreement, they can rely on it to be binding."
About Goldstein, Bachman & Newman
Goldstein, Bachman & Newman is a law firm based in Middlesex County, New Jersey. They provide for a range of client needs, including family law matters, estate planning, criminal defense, and other issues. They pride themselves in providing for the full range of their clients' needs, and in providing representation that is affordable, efficient, and effective. Further information about their services is available at www.goldsteinbachman.com/new-jersey-divorce-lawyer/middlesex-county