Articles Posted in Adoption

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TANGEL 13he jurisdiction of the Family Part of the New Jersey Superior Court to make orders determining custody is based upon the common law doctrine of parens patriae, which imposes upon the court an affirmative duty to protect the best interests of minor children. The members the New Jersey Judiciary that serve our State in making these decisions will tell you that these decisions are some of the most difficult they have faced in their professional careers and also some of the most rewarding. On December 15, 2015, the Supreme Court of New Jersey issued an opinion modifying and affirming the Appellate Division’s decision denying the appeal by the New Jersey Division of Child Protection & Permanency in the case of New Jersey Division of Child Protection & Permanency v. K.N. and K.E., 435 N.J. Super. 16 (App.Div. 2014), wherein the “Division” appealed from a June, 2013 order that awarded custody of T.E. (“Tommy”), the six-year-old son of K.N. (“Kara”) and T.E. (“Kevin”) to his maternal grandmother as a paid resource placement parents. Continue reading

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For more than three decades a debate has been waged in New Jersey on the adoption front over the extent to which adoptees can access their birth records and uncover information about their biological parents. In 1940, New Jersey began sealing adoption records.   In 1977, New Jersey allowed the records to be accessible by court order. N.J.S.A. 9:3-51.   Anti-abortion/pro-life activists advocated for birth records to be sealed because birth mothers who wished for anonymity might be more inclined to have an abortion if her privacy were not protected, or birth mothers might be more inclined to use New Jersey’s Safe Haven Infant Protection  law that allows a newborn who is less than thirty days old to be left legally and anonymously at a police station or hospital emergency room without having to give any identifying or health information about the birth mother.  Continue reading