Our Toms River Child Custody Lawyers helped a client regain her parental rights today in Ocean County Superior Court. The client was facing a tough DYFS case at the same time her divorce case was going on. As a result of her cases being mismanaged by a prior attorney, her case was a total mess. In fact, these cases appeared hopeless from the surface. However, when our lawyers see a tough case, we get tougher.worked non-stop to fight against the non-stop allegations from her husband, the law guardian and DYFS. The judge was a second away from putting the client in in-patient but we prevented it from happening.continued to fight hard and at the next court appearance, we got the DYFS case dismissed and as a result, the client’s visitation was no longer supervised.
In this case, our client (the father) had a vindictive ex call DYFS (now DCPP) on him and make false allegations of child abuse and neglect. Unfortunately, the client did not call us when dealing with the DYFS investigation. Like many people, he felt that he didn’t need a lawyer because he didn’t do anything wrong. He wasn’t using drugs so why not take a drug test? After passing several tests, he failed one. He swore that he didn’t use any drugs so we made sure that he took a hair follicle test. We then worked with DYFS to close out their investigation once we were able to show them that this was a false positive. We also made sure that DYFS sent over a report to the court. The timing of everything was very close but the court received everything the day before the motion date. As a result, the mother’s motion to suspend parenting time was denied and our client’s visitation rights were restored just in time for the holidays.
This case was a different type of fight. Instead of fighting over custody, we were fighting over jurisdiction. The client knew that the state that established jurisdiction would forever impact his parental rights and obligations. The mother fought to keep the case in New Jersey and we fought to keep it in Pennsylvania. Even though the mother represented herself at the first court appearance, it still wasn’t a cake walk. We had to fight hard to get what we wanted and we did. Within two weeks, the mother hired a powerful law firm to file a motion to reconsider. We had to battle even harder and we did. The Court once again sided with us and the jurisdiction was kept in Pennsylvania.
This was a tough divorce case because the father wanted custody of the parties’ child and he would not give up. We fought hard for the client and we had more resolve than the other side. It didn’t help that the father’s attorney was very difficult to deal with. Just before trial, we worked out a settlement where the client was the custodial parent. This is what happens when you have an aggressive child custody lawyer that is fully prepared to go to trial.
This case showed that it pays to keep fighting but it also pays to do things the right way first. We represented the mother of a 5 year old who was never married to the father. Since there was no divorce, there was no reason to force the parties in court. However, it would have been smart to reduce the custody and support agreement into a court order. Because they didn’t, all hell broke loose when another family member put the child in danger. The father refused to return the child for parenting time. Without a formal court order, there was nothing for the police to do so both parties filed an order to show cause in family court. Both sides showed up with lawyers and the other side fought hard. The presiding judge met with us in chambers and informed us that the child would be given to the father. Our client was devastated. The judge wanted us to just accept it and go home. We informed the judge that we didn’t get hired to sell the client out so we had to keep fighting. A few minutes later we went back into court and Jef Henninger put everything he had into the case. Amazingly, the judge completely changed her mind and awarded custody to our client! The other side was shocked as they were just gloating as to how they beat us.