Alimony Lawyers in Morristown, New Jersey
Dedicated Alimony Attorneys Help Clients Navigate Spousal Support Matters in Morris County and Throughout NJ
Divorce is never easy, whether that be on an emotional level or a financial one. For many couples seeking a permanent dissolution of their marriage, restructuring their finances can become a source of conflict. This can be especially true in situations where one spouse has been out of the workforce entirely, while perhaps raising children or taking care of the household, and they are now trying to get through the divorce process while also making the transition into being self-supportive. When a situation like this arises, it is not uncommon for the lower-earning spouse to seek support through the assistance of alimony, spousal support, or maintenance – all of which translate to the same thing: the higher-earning spouse paying support to the other after a divorce.
Finding agreeable solutions in alimony cases can be one of the most difficult aspects of a divorce. Whether you’re the one who’ll be receiving or paying support, you need information to negotiate effectively. For this reason, it is important to have an experienced attorney by your side that can help you understand New Jersey’s divorce laws concerning alimony and to provide the legal advice and representation your case requires in order to be resolved favorably. To speak with an experienced divorce lawyer, contact Hanlon Dunn Robertson Schwartz in Morristown, New Jersey.
Types of Alimony in New Jersey
Alimony, in general, is intended to implement a financial structure that allows both spouses to maintain a lifestyle that is close to what the couple experienced during their marriage. In cases where one spouse was previously dependent on the other for financial support and stability, alimony offers the assistance they need in order to become self-sufficient. There are many different types of alimony that can potentially play a role in a divorce case. New Jersey recognizes five types, including:
- Temporary Alimony: This type of alimony is awarded to those who are low-earning or unemployed, and have been so for the duration of their marriage. As the name suggests, this is a temporary solution awarded during the period of time that the divorce proceeding is pending, before a final decree is issued and a more permanent type of alimony award can be made.
- Limited Duration Alimony: This is alimony that is granted for a limited period of time (number of years). It is awarded in cases where one spouse is not quite in a position that is self-supporting but is headed in that direction. It will usually last for a predetermined period of time post-divorce or until the lower-income spouse is able to support themselves.
- Permanent Alimony: If you were involved in a long marriage and you gave up your career or education opportunities to take care of your family, you might receive permanent alimony. Courts will look at a variety of factors to make their decision about permanent alimony to ensure that you qualify, as this is a big commitment for both spouses.
- Rehabilitative Alimony: This type of alimony is provided for a short period of time to allow the receiving spouse time to get adjusted and to establish him or herself, financially.
- Reimbursement Alimony: This type of alimony is awarded in order to reimburse an ex-spouse for some expenses that he or she may have paid out on behalf of the other ex-spouse. This is often the case in situations where one spouse supported the other during school while he or she received a degree.
As with most issues in your divorce, you and your spouse can agree to the amount and length of time alimony will be paid. But if you can’t agree, a court will set the terms for you. There are many determining factors that will be taken into consideration if the courts need to decide on how much money each spouse can expect to pay or to receive, such as:
- The need for alimony
- The ability to pay
- The duration of the marriage
- The physical and emotional health of both spouses
- The standard of living both spouses had during the marriage
- Parental responsibilities of both parties
- And more
Because each divorcing couple’s unique circumstances must be taken into consideration before a decision can be made on what type of alimony (if any) will be granted, it is important to have an experienced attorney by your side that can help you navigate through the case and to provide you with the legal advice and representation you require.
Washington Township Alimony Attorneys Help Clients Understand Modification and Termination
Over time, circumstances might change and make it necessary for the judge to revisit your alimony order. For instance, you might be wondering what happens if you have been supporting your spouse while they receive an education, but while doing so, you lose your own career? Another scenario that might come up is if your spouse is supposed to be seeking a career but does not do so in the allotted time period that the court dictated. From there, you might wonder if you still owe alimony to your spouse or if your order can be modified or terminated based on these situations.
The same can be said in cases where a spouse remarries or enters into a civil union in New Jersey. The other spouse must immediately become informed of the marriage and most alimony payments will be stopped. However, if you are involved in a case of rehabilitative or reimbursement alimony, these payments will not stop even if the spouse remarries.
You will also find cases where you might have to change the amount of alimony that was originally decided upon. Spouses are not permitted to skirt out of their alimony responsibilities but they might wonder if, based on the circumstances of their case, they are permitted to reduce or increase the amount of alimony that is allotted. The answer to this question is yes, however, it can only take place if the court approves of it.
If you or your spouse requested a change in alimony, the first thing that the courts will do is to review both spouse’s finances. There are certain circumstances that can lead to a reduction or increase in alimony. One of the biggest reasons for a change in alimony occurs when the paying spouse loses their job. Other reasons might include the paying spouse receiving a serious illness, an increase in the cost of living in their area, incurring disability, or if the dependent spouse moves in with a significant other and the need for alimony no longer exists. If you are the supporting spouse and you want to have payments reduced, it is imperative to be able to prove that there is a necessity for it based on the circumstances. An experienced attorney from Hanlon Dunn Robertson & Schwartz can help in these situations and will be thoroughly prepared to advocate on your behalf to protect your rights and interests.
Experienced Alimony Attorneys in Randolph Helping New Jersey Clients Establish or Modify Alimony
At Hanlon Dunn Robertson & Schwartz, we handle alimony matters for clients throughout Morris County, New Jersey, including Parsippany-Troy Hills Township, Mount Olive, Morris Township, Dover, Morristown, Denville Township, Pequannock Township, East Hanover, Montville, and Hanover Township, NJ. We realize that there are many cases that involve a need for alimony and that every client has the right to explore this financial assistance the event of a divorce. Please contact our experienced attorneys by filling out our convenient online contact form to find out how we can assist you in your alimony case today.
FAQ: What if I believe my spouse is at fault for our divorce, will this dictate how much I receive in alimony?
Alimony is actually not related to the reasons for divorce in any way. Even if your spouse behaved in a way that might reflect badly, such as in cases of infidelity or laziness, this does not mean that you will be able to use this to reduce or increase the amount of alimony owed.
FAQ: What if my spouse refuses to work and says that they cannot pay alimony?
A spouse cannot skirt these responsibilities by refusing to work or refusal to tell the courts about the work they do. The court might choose to “impute” income in these cases, which means assigning an amount based on past earnings. In these cases, they will have to receive a job so that they can keep up with the payments that they are supposed to make to their spouse.