New Jersey Divorce Lawyer
A divorce could be one of the most difficult emotional experiences you go through in your life. At such a delicate and vulnerable time, you may need wise and experienced counsel from a New Jersey divorce lawyer to help you deal with all the issues—financial and otherwise—that often arise during the dissolution of a marriage.
In the past, a spouse had to prove specific grounds such as physical abuse, abandonment, adultery, or mental cruelty for a court to allow a divorce. Today, New Jersey and most states allow for a no-fault divorce based on “irreconcilable differences.” If you are considering or actively seeking a divorce, a skilled family attorney could provide knowledgeable advice and help you navigate your way through this challenging process.
Requirements for Divorce
While there is no longer any requirements for one partner to declare valid grounds for a divorce, there are still certain requirements that must be satisfied in order for a New Jersey court to grant a divorce. Before formally dissolving their marriage, spouses must have lived in New Jersey for 12 consecutive months before the filing of the complaint, experienced mutually irreconcilable differences for a minimum of six months, and have no reasonable chance of reconciliation. A New Jersey attorney could help individuals understand if their divorce case meets the necessary requirements.
Defining and Dividing Marital Property
The financial aspects of divorce alone may be difficult to handle, notably those pertaining to splitting up the marital property. Some states use a “community property” approach, under which all assets acquired during the marriage must be divided equally. New Jersey follows the example of most other U.S. laws in following the doctrine of common law property, which grants courts more flexibility in dividing property.
While distribution between two divorcing spouses is meant to be fair, this does not necessarily mean it should be exactly equal. In practice, this means that either spouse could get more or less property by value or volume during a divorce, depending on a variety of circumstances that determine what distribution plan would be just for both parties.
Judges have considerable discretion to weigh many factors before reaching a decision. This could include the relative earning contributions of the spouses, the value of one spouse staying at home or raising the children, and the earning potential of each going forward. With a potential exception to bitterly contested divorce cases, it is typically better to sit down and negotiate a settlement that suits the individual couple’s needs with the help of a divorce attorney in New Jersey. This may be better than the one-size-fits-all approach mandated by state law.
Taking Care of Children
Child custody and visitation rights may often be the most emotionally fraught issue involved in divorce proceedings. When deciding on matters like these, the courts will look to the best interests of the children in deciding what the outcome will be. Determining what those best interests are could be difficult. Some factors the courts may look at include:
- Which parent could better provide child care in both a personal and financial sense
- The employment of the parents and responsibilities of that employment the physical and mental health and age of the parents
- The child’s emotional ties with each parent
- The moral fitness of the parents
- If applicable, the preference of the child
Talk to a New Jersey Divorce Attorney
A New Jersey divorce lawyer could handle the sensitive matters typically involved in a divorce with respect and sympathy. They could also provide passionate representation in an effort to defend your interests completely. Whether you are dealing with the consequences of divorce or about to file for one, getting in touch with a qualified attorney could be the easiest choice you make throughout the entire process.