Custody of a Minor Child Goes to a Surviving Parent Upon the Death of Parent Having Custody

HNWGuardianship Law

In the case of the death of a parent having custody of a minor child(ren), the care and custody of minor children does not automatically go to the surviving parent without an order of the Superior Court if the parents have been living separate and apart and no co-custody award was given to the separated parent as part of the judgment of divorce.

The Superior Court of NJ has the right, in an action brought by a guardian ad litem on behalf of the children, to appoint a suitable person as guardian of such minor child(ren), and shall have the right to remove such guardian, and to appoint a new guardian or guardians, and to make such judgments and orders, from time to time, as the circumstances of the case and the benefit of the children shall require.

While generally the surviving biological parent will be appointed the guardian over his/her child(ren), it’s not always a guarantee.

To discuss your NJ guardianship matter, please contact Fredrick P. Niemann, Esq. toll-free at (855) 376-5291 or email him at  Please ask us about our video conferencing or telephone consultations if you are unable to come to our office.

By Fredrick P. Niemann, Esq. of Hanlon Niemann & Wright, a Freehold Township, Monmouth County, NJ Guardianship Attorney

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