Arons & Solomon Divorce Lawyers | January 30, 2024 | Family Law
The practice of family law in New Jersey covers a wide range of topics, everything from divorce to child custody and everything in between. Family law is also often referred to as domestic relations because it covers matters related to the relationships between family members. In the State of New Jersey, family law may also apply in matters related to personal relationships between individuals.
Common examples of family law cases in Bergen County include:
Divorce is the legal process of ending a marriage. It may also be referred to as the dissolution of marriage. Couples must meet residency requirements before obtaining a divorce in New Jersey.
New Jersey has fault and no-fault grounds for divorce. You can obtain a no-fault divorce on the grounds of irreconcilable differences for at least six months or continuous separation for at least 18 months. The fault grounds for divorce in New Jersey include adultery, desertion, incarceration, habitual drunkenness, extreme cruelty, and being institutionalized for mental illness.
Divorce is a common reason for child custody to come before the court. However, custody matters may also arise because of allegations of abuse, neglect, or abandonment. A parent may also be accused of being unfit to care for a child.
Judges decide custody cases based on what is in the best interest of the child. They consider numerous factors to determine whether parents are fit to have custody. Judges may grant joint custody or grant one parent sole custody.
When spouses divorce, they must divide their marital assets. New Jersey is an equitable division state for property division. Each spouse is entitled to a fair share of the marital property, but that does not mean a one-half share.
Judges consider many factors when deciding how to divide the marital estate. The judge may believe an unequal division is fair based on the evidence presented in court.
Parents have a legal obligation to support their children financially regardless of the relationship between them. Child support is a common issue in divorce cases, but a parent can petition the court to order child support even if they never married the other parent.
New Jersey uses child support guidelines to calculate the base amount of the child support obligation. However, judges may deviate from the base amount for cause, or the parents could agree to a higher child support payment.
Typically, the non-custodial parent pays child support to the custodial parent. The child lives primarily with the custodial parent. Even if custody is split 50-50, the higher-earning parent pays support to the other parent.
Alimony or spousal support is financial support paid by a spouse to the other spouse during a separation or after a divorce. While New Jersey divorce laws allow for alimony, support is not guaranteed. There must be a financial need for support and the ability to pay support.
Pre-nuptial agreements resolve issues that may be decided during a divorce, but before the couple is married. The couple enters a written contract outlining the various matters that would need to be addressed should they divorce and how those matters will be resolved. For example, the couple may agree that neither spouse will receive alimony payments.
A pre-nuptial agreement can eliminate the need for costly and time-consuming litigation if the parties divorce. A couple may also enter a post-nuptial agreement after they are married. The post-nuptial agreement can accomplish the same goal as an agreement signed before marriage.
The collaborative divorce process is non-adversarial. The spouses agree to resolve their differences without litigating the matter in court.
Spouses and their attorneys negotiate a divorce settlement to be incorporated into their divorce decree. The couple may work with one or more experts to facilitate the negotiations.
Other Matters That the Family Courts in New Jersey Handle
In addition to the above matters, family courts also handle other matters related to domestic relations. Examples of matters that come before the family court include, but are not limited to:
- Domestic violence and orders of protection
- Legal guardianships
- Paternity issues
- Judgment modifications
- Civil unions and domestic partnerships
- Cases involving the Division of Youth & Family Services
- Juvenile delinquency cases
- Grandparent rights
- Termination of parental rights
Family court matters are heard by the New Jersey Superior Court’s Family Division. A Bergen County family law attorney assists clients with matters before the court. A family law attorney understands the laws applicable in the case and the legal strategies that might help the client achieve the outcome they desire.
Set Up a Free Consultation With a Family Lawyer Near You
The best way to prepare to appear in family court is with the help of an experienced Bergen County family law attorney. If you have a situation that requires going to family court, it would be wise to seek legal counsel as soon as possible.
Contact the Bergen County Family and Divorce Law Firm of Arons & Solomon Divorce Lawyers for more help
Contact the experienced family attorneys at Arons & Solomon Divorce Lawyers today for legal assistance. Visit our law office in Bergen County or give us a call at (201) 487-1199 to schedule a free consultation with our team.