Parental Rights in New Jersey

New Jersey State Law and Parental Rights

At Risk

New Jersey does not have a state statute that explicitly defines and protects parental rights as fundamental rights.

Senate bill 2100 (proposed in 2014) and Assembly bill 4234 (proposed in 2015) would have corrected this, but neither bill passed.

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New Jersey Courts and Parental Rights

"Strict Scrutiny" Applied to Parental Rights

However, this precedent is subject to change.

Moriarty v. Bradt, 827 A.2d 203, 214–15 (N.J. 2003)
"Summing up, when the State seeks, by statute, to interfere with family and parental autonomy, a fundamental right is at issue. That statute thus is subject to strict scrutiny and will only pass muster if it is narrowly tailored to serve a compelling state interest." (citing Washington v. Glucksberg, 521 U.S. 702, 720-21; and Roe v. Wade, 410 U.S. 113, 155-56.)