No marriage involved. Mother and child moved in living with me in VA after the child was born. She moved out to NJ after two years. In the two years I took care of both mother and child, and she was a full-time stay home mom. They have been living in NJ for about 2 years now, and she just filed a motion for full custody and child support. I need some help to challenge jurisdiction and settle the case in VA.
Divorce / Separation Lawyer
I am sorry that you are going through this, but given the facts you have presented your jurisdiciton is in New Jersey, however, I strongly suggest that you chat with a local attorney and go over all the specifics with him or her, perhaps your local rules may have an exception. take care.
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Juvenile Law Attorney
As stated by Atty Lewis, it sounds like jurisdiction has passed to NJ. Generally jurisdiction lies where the child has resided for the previous 6 months.
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Personal Injury Lawyer
Because you did not oppose the move initially, it appears jurisdiction is now in NJ. Have you had parenting time with the child? You will need a NJ attorney to represent you.
Please be advised my answers to questions does not constitute legal advise and you should not rely on it, due to the fact that we have never met, I have not been aprised of the facts in you case nor have I reviewed any documents.
Child Support Lawyer
the jurisdictional basis for custody and visitation is different then the jurisdictional basis for child support. due to the passage of time, jurisdiction for custody and visitation will be in the child's home state of NJ. However, if you do not have sufficient minimum contacts with NJ [other then appearing there to litigate the issues of custody and visitation] then NJ will have no jurisdiction over you for the purpose of issuing an order for child support and any orders for child support would need to be established against you in your home state of VA. You should retain an experienced attorney in NJ to address the issues of custody and visitation and to move to dismiss the application for support on the basis that NJ lacks any jurisdiction over that issue.
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Divorce / Separation Lawyer
There are already other good answers to this question, and Mr. Drabin covers the important difference between jurisdiction over the child, (which allows New Jersey to grant custody orders), and jurisdiction over YOU, which is required for child support.
Some of the answers kind of pulled their punches on the state issue, saying that jurisdiction is "generally" somewhere. In fact, the Uniform Child Custody Jurisdiction and Enforcement Act states that the child's home state, under these circumstances, is New Jersey. The only way that the case could be heard in Virginia would be if New Jersey gave up its jurisdiction to Virginia, as part of an order of "forum non convenens," which is Latin for inconvenient forum. That won't happen here, because the inconvenient forum elements aren't at play.
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