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Answers To Commonly Asked Questions About Divorce In New Jersey

Divorce can sometimes seem dramatically complicated, even for the simplest of cases. Other cases can involve intense emotional issues, like abuse. Using his decades of experience in family law matters and divorce, our attorney, Frank Tournour, serves clients in East Brunswick and throughout Middlesex County at Tournour Law. In his many years of practice, he has seen it all. Here, he answers some of the most commonly asked questions. However, each case is unique, with its own sets of facts and circumstances. If you are contemplating a divorce, we can help.

How long do I have to live in New Jersey before I can file for divorce in a New Jersey court?

There is a residency requirement to file for divorce in New Jersey. Either you or your spouse must have resided in New Jersey for at least one year before filing for divorce.

What are the grounds for divorce in New Jersey?

New Jersey is not a pure “no-fault” divorce state, but it does allow two grounds for “no-fault” divorces:

  • The two parties have lived separately and apart without cohabitation for 18 consecutive months.
  • Irreconcilable differences have caused the breakdown of the marriage for a period of six months with no reasonable prospect of reconciliation.

The “fault” grounds upon which a divorce may be obtained are as follows:

  • Adultery
  • Willful and continued desertion for one year
  • Extreme cruelty
  • Drug or alcohol addiction
  • Institutionalization due to mental illness for two or more years
  • Imprisonment for 18 months or more
  • Deviant sexual behavior

How you choose to proceed with your divorce could have lasting potential consequences for your family. For example, filing for divorce with accusations of fault could potentially make the process of divorce more contentious and adversarial. If there are children involved, filing for a no-fault divorce on the grounds of irreconcilable differences can help preserve family relationships and make for an easier time co-parenting.

When a couple gets divorced, how is the property divided in New Jersey?

New Jersey is an equitable distribution state, meaning that the court’s division of property and debts should be fair and equitable, but will not necessarily be equal.

What are the differences between child custody, visitation and child support?

Child custody refers to which parent will have legal and physical custody of the child or children. The parent with custody is the parent who will make the primary decisions for the child and with whom the child or children will live.

Visitation refers to the noncustodial parent’s ability to visit and spend time with the child or children. In New Jersey, grandparents may also secure visitation rights.

Child support refers to the financial obligation of a parent to support their child and usually consists of money paid by the noncustodial parent to the custodial parent in order to fulfill this obligation. It is common to have a lot of questions about child support.

Is there an alternative to litigation in divorce cases?

Yes. The court encourages alternative forms of dispute resolution, like mediation or collaborative law solutions. These offer a potentially quicker and far less costly alternative to often protracted and emotionally charged divorce litigation.

In a collaborative divorce, both parties and their attorneys commit to resolving their differences fairly, without the threat of taking one another to court. A team of experts, including an accountant, a child specialist, mental health professionals and financial planners may assist in the collaborative divorce process.

Contact An Experienced Divorce Lawyer Today

Every case is unique. To get detailed answers to questions about your divorce or situation, call us at 732-913-3634 or email us to schedule an initial consultation with New Jersey divorce lawyer Frank Tournour as soon as possible. Proudly representing clients throughout Middlesex County, New Jersey.