Domestic Violence Orders and Custody

Ensuring the Safety of the Child

When making a decision on custody of a child, New Jersey courts are required to consider several factors. Among these is any history of domestic violence, especially if a domestic violence restraining order has been issued against either parent.

The judge will consider a history of domestic violence when deciding on custody in a custody case. The judge can also grant the victim temporary custody of the child as part of a domestic violence restraining order, even if a custody case hasn’t been initiated. A temporary ex-parte restraining order can be obtained in emergency situations, and a final restraining order can be issued after that, if needed. Once temporary restraining orders terminate (by being withdrawn or by being vacated at trial), any temporary custody order would as well. A permanent custody award can be sought at any point if there has been a domestic violence incident but would require a full hearing process.

So, if you are requesting a domestic violence restraining order from the court, you can also ask for temporary custody of your child if you believe his or her safety is at stake when with the abuser. And, if a domestic violence restraining order has been issued against you, know that the other parent may be granted temporary sole custody of your child. You may still be allowed parenting time with your child, but you may be prohibited from the right to have your child live with you (physical custody) or make decisions regarding your child (legal custody). In these cases, the judge can order your parenting time be limited, supervised, in public spaces, or even in a designated venue.

If you want to fight for your custodial rights, you will need an advocate on your side in court. Speak with an experienced New Jersey child custody and child welfare attorney if you are worried about your custodial rights or if you want to protect your child from an abusive situation. The courts want to see every child spend time with both parents, but domestic violence orders can make this unsafe. With the assistance of a skilled attorney, you can make sure your parental rights and not violated and your child is protected.

 Domestic violence orders can significantly affect custody, and the knowledgeable attorneys at the Williams Law Group, LLC have the experience needed to defend both your rights as a parent and your child’s safety. Located in Union, New Jersey, Williams Law Group, LLC provides compassionate and dedicated legal services to Union, Bergen, Essex, Hudson, Morris, Monmouth, and Middlesex counties, and the surrounding areas. Our knowledgeable attorneys handle divorce and family law, child custody, and child abuse/neglect cases. Call our office at (908) 810-1083, email us at, or contact us through our confidential online form to schedule a consultation and ultimately get you connected with an experienced New Jersey divorce and child custody attorney.

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