How does joint custody work?

In New Jersey, everybody has joint custody, and that’s true even if one person has the children fifteen days in a row, and the other person only sees them for one hour at a time, supervised at the sheriff’s office. They call everything in New Jersey, “joint custody”. In New York, the court rarely awards joint custody unless both people agree. If you agree that you’ll have joint custody, the court will go along with it. But in any event, either in New York or in New Jersey, joint custody is really defined by the agreement that you make or the court order that’s issued. You could have a joint custody agreement where people share the children 50/50, or you could have a joint custody agreement where the non-residential parent only sees the child one day a week. It depends on the agreement or the court order.

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