What is a “Guardian Ad Litem”?

In rare cases in the New Jersey family courts where children are at issue a guardian ad litem may be utilized, whereby an attorney is appointed by the court with the sole purpose being to represent the specific interests of the children. Usually, the court only appoints a guardian ad litem when it believes the children’s best interests are in danger and that they need an advocate of their own.  Upon occasion, one or both parents may even request the guardian ad litem especially if one parent suspects that the children are being unduly influenced by the other parent.  Both parents may be required to share the cost of hiring the guardian ad litem, in addition to their own lawyers.

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