ALLISON GUNZBURG v. CRAIG GUNZBURG

Annotate this Case

NOT FOR PUBLICATION WITHOUT THE

APPROVAL OF THE APPELLATE DIVISION

SUPERIOR COURT OF NEW JERSEY

APPELLATE DIVISION

DOCKET NO. A-0

ALLISON GUNZBURG,

Plaintiff-Respondent,

v.

CRAIG GUNZBURG,

Defendant-Appellant.

______________________________________________________

June 8, 2015

 

Submitted June 2, 2015 Decided

Before Judges Fisher and Nugent.

On appeal from the Superior Court of New Jersey, Chancery Division, Family Part, Essex County, Docket No. FM-07-1401-10.

Weinberger Law Group, LLC, attorneys for appellant (Jessica Ragno Sprague, on the brief).

Skoloff & Wolfe, PC, attorneys for respondent (Richard F. Iglar, on the brief).

PER CURIAM

The parties were married in 2005 and their only child born in 2007. Following a twelve-day trial, the parties were divorced by way of a judgment entered on July 5, 2012. The judge's thorough oral decision at that time provided that the parties would share joint legal and physical custody of the child.

Joint legal and physical custody presupposes their ability to make joint decisions and cooperate regarding child issues. See Nufrio v. Nufrio, 341 N.J. Super. 548, 549-50 (App. Div. 2001). Here, the record reveals the ability to cooperate and jointly make decisions concerning the child does not exist. In fact, despite the holding that there be joint legal and physical custody, the judge anticipated future difficulties and appointed a parenting coordinator. Notwithstanding the presence of a coordinator to eliminate disputes, the parties have repeatedly returned to the trial court for a resolution of arising difficulties.

This appeal arises from the denial of defendant's motion for a change in the parenting schedule based on alleged changes in circumstances in his work schedule. Defendant is an airline pilot and he asserted in his motion that his employer's prior system for assigning flights allowed him to fit his obligations at work around the existing parenting schedule. In moving for relief, defendant claimed the employer's system changed and, therefore, the parenting schedule must change.

The trial judge determined, after hearing oral argument on the motion, that defendant failed to present sufficient evidence of a meaningful change in circumstances. In addition, the judge focused on the controversy from the child's point of view and concluded that the changes proposed by defendant were not in the child's best interests. The judge also adhered to the parenting coordinator's recommendation regarding summer camp that defendant opposed.

Defendant appeals, arguing

I. THE TRIAL COURT ERRED IN FAILING TO MODIFY THE PARENTING TIME SCHEDULE.

A. The Trial Court Erred In Failing To Determine That There Was Not A Prima Facie Showing Of Changed Circumstances.

B. The Trial Court Erred In Failing To Have The Matter Re-Visited By The Best Interest's Evaluator.

C. The Trial Court Erred In Failing To Schedule A Plenary Hearing.

II. THE TRIAL COURT ERRED IN MAKING A DECISION FOR THE 2015 CAMP LOCATION.

III. THE TRIAL COURT ERRED IN FAILING TO HAVE THE PLAINTIFF[] [HELD] RESPONSIBLE FOR THE COST OF THE PARENTING COORDINATOR.

IV. THE TRIAL COURT ERRED IN FAILING TO AWARD COUNSEL FEES.

We find insufficient merit in these arguments to warrant discussion in a written opinion. R. 2:11-3(e)(1)(E).

Affirmed.