Palimony: what is it?

As a follow-up to our last post on alimony, we provide this brief discussion on the related topic of palimony. While similar in purpose, there are some crucial differences and the particular facts and circumstances of each case are critically important.

Palimony is a term used to describe support payments or division of property between unmarried partners after a separation. In New Jersey, palimony is not governed by specific statutes, but rather by case law established in the landmark case of Marvin v. Marvin in California. In New Jersey, courts may enforce palimony agreements if they are in writing, express a clear intent to support one partner financially, and are not based solely on a sexual relationship. Courts will consider various factors in determining the enforceability of such agreements, including the length of the relationship, the financial contributions of each partner, and any sacrifices made for the relationship. However, it’s important to consult with a legal professional for specific advice regarding palimony in New Jersey, as laws and precedents may vary or change over time

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Relief for NJ families.

In several counties throughout the state families dealing with divorce have been held hostage by political gamesmanship, which is resulted in a severe shortage of judges. As explained in the link below, due to new appointments, divorce trials will resume in several parts of the state.

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Understanding NJ Alimony Law

Alimony is a major issue in many of the divorce cases we handle? Questions we often get deal with whether alimony is appropriate, how much can alimony be, and how long will alimony be paid? This post is intended to provide a basic overview of NJ alimony law.

Alimony, also known as spousal support, is a legal provision designed to ensure financial stability for one spouse after divorce or separation. Each state in the United States has its own set of laws governing alimony, and in this article, we will delve into the specifics of New Jersey alimony law. Whether you are a resident of New Jersey or simply seeking information about alimony laws, this comprehensive guide will provide you with a detailed understanding of how alimony works in the state.

  1. Types of Alimony in New Jersey: New Jersey recognizes several types of alimony, each serving different purposes. They include:
  • Open Durational Alimony: This type of alimony is typically awarded in long-term marriages and has no predetermined end date. It can continue until either party’s death, remarriage, or cohabitation.
  • Limited Duration Alimony: It is awarded for a specific period, generally suitable for shorter marriages or when a spouse needs support for a predetermined time to become self-supporting.
  • Rehabilitative Alimony: Awarded to assist a spouse in acquiring education, training, or skills necessary for financial independence.
  • Reimbursement Alimony: This type of alimony is awarded when one spouse supported the other through education or professional training and is intended to reimburse the supporting spouse for the expenses incurred.
  • Pendente Lite Alimony: Temporary alimony awarded during the pendency of a divorce case to provide financial support until a final determination is made.
  1. Factors Considered in Alimony Determination: New Jersey courts consider various factors when determining alimony, including:
  • Duration of the marriage.
  • Age and health of both parties.
  • Income and earning capacity of each spouse.
  • Standard of living during the marriage.
  • Contributions to the marriage, both financial and non-financial.
  • Education, skills, and employability of each spouse.
  • Child custody and support obligations.
  • Any prenuptial or postnuptial agreements.
  1. Modification and Termination of Alimony: Under certain circumstances, alimony in New Jersey can be modified or terminated. Changes may be sought if there is a substantial change in circumstances, such as a job loss, disability, or significant increase or decrease in income. Cohabitation or remarriage of the recipient spouse can also terminate alimony payments. It is important to note that modification or termination requests must be made through the court system.
  2. Tax Considerations: Prior to December 31, 2018, alimony payments were tax-deductible for the paying spouse and taxable as income for the receiving spouse. However, due to changes in federal tax laws, for divorce agreements executed after December 31, 2018, alimony is no longer deductible for the paying spouse, and the recipient spouse no longer has to report it as income for tax purposes.
  3. Seeking Legal Guidance: Navigating the complexities of alimony law can be challenging, and it is advisable to seek the assistance of an experienced family law attorney. An attorney can provide personalized advice, explain your rights and obligations, and guide you through the legal process.

Conclusion: New Jersey alimony law is designed to ensure fair and equitable financial support for spouses after divorce or separation. Understanding the types of alimony, factors considered in determination, and the possibility of modification or termination is crucial for both paying and receiving parties. If you find yourself in a situation involving alimony, consulting with a knowledgeable attorney can help you navigate the legal landscape and make informed decisions that are in your best interests.

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Can I seek custody of my grandchild?

From time to time we get inquiries from concerned grandparents asking if they can obtain custody of their grandchildren.

Yes, grandparents in New Jersey can seek custody of their grandchildren under certain circumstances. In New Jersey, grandparents can file for custody or visitation rights under the following conditions:

  1. Death or incapacity of a parent: If one or both parents are deceased or incapacitated, grandparents can petition the court for custody or visitation.
  2. Unfitness of parents: If the grandparents can prove that the child’s parents are unfit or unable to care for the child adequately, they may be granted custody.
  3. Abandonment: If the child has been abandoned by the parents, grandparents can seek custody.
  4. Harm to the child: If there is evidence of harm or potential harm to the child in the care of the parents, grandparents can seek custody to protect the child’s well-being.
  5. Existing custody order: If there is an existing custody order, grandparents can petition the court for visitation rights if they can demonstrate that it is in the best interests of the child.

It’s important to note that grandparents seeking custody or visitation rights in New Jersey must demonstrate to the court that granting them custody or visitation would be in the best interests of the child. The court will consider various factors, including the relationship between the child and the grandparents, the child’s preference (if the child is old enough to express a preference), the ability of the grandparents to provide a stable and loving environment, and any other relevant factors.

Grandparents in New Jersey who are considering seeking custody or visitation rights should consult with a family law attorney who can provide guidance specific to their situation and help them navigate the legal process

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Always learning.

Today I had the opportunity to serve on this panel presentation with an amazing group of business leaders. Always looking for opportunities to learn how to better The Durst Firm for the benefit of our clients. Click on the link to see the presentation

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