Judge Richard Meyer sitting in the Family Court of Essex County was referred a case for determination with regard to cross applications of both the mother and father to determine permanent custody of the parties’ children. Justice Meyer had ordered a forensic psychological evaluation of the family. He took this action to obtain information to assist him in deciding issues concerning custody. There had been a temporary order granting joint legal custody of the parties’ children and shared physical custody. Each of the parties had alternating parenting time under a schedule with the parties’ children.
The Mother’s Claims
The mother’s moving papers claimed she had been subjected to domestic violence by the her husband during the parties’ separation. In addition, she claimed the children had copied the father’s behavior towards the mother which was “disrespectful and insulting behaviors towards her.” Justice Meyer took into consideration the father had shown poor judgment and parenting skills. He found the mother was better able to maintain the children in a stable household. In addition he found, from past performance as a parent, the mother’s was superior to the father’s performance.
Judge Meyer, in his ruling, found the father had engaged in parental alienation of the children. He found the mother was the more fit parent to have custody of the children. Since neither of the parents communicated well with each other, joint custody was no longer a feasible solution in this case. He awarded the mother sole legal and physical custody of the children and established a visitation schedule for the father.
If you are a father and you want custody of your children you should behave!