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New Jersey Divorce Overview
If you are contemplating divorce in New Jersey, why not contact an experienced divorce lawyer?Â
A divorce case is initiated in New Jersey when one party files a Complaint for Divorce with the Court.Â The most frequently used ground for divorce in New Jersey is irreconcilable differences lasting at least six months.Â After the filed Complaint for Divorce is received from the Court, it must then be served upon the other party, who in turn must file a responsive document with the Court.
As the divorce caseÂ proceeds, financial documents, such as tax returns, recent paystubs, account statements, and pension information will be exchanged.Â Frequently, this process moves quicker if both parties are represented by attorneys, who will be aware of what documents are necessary and what documents are not.Â The parties will also exchange Case Information Statements, which are mandatory financial disclosures which detail all assets and liabilities of the marriage, as well as setting forth the household spending patterns.Â During this period of time, the parties, through their attorneys, may also engage in negotiations in an attempt to resolve any outstanding issues, such as equitable distribution of property, alimony, and custody, visitation, and child support.
If the parties cannot reach agreement, they will be scheduled to appear in Court for the Early Settlement Panel (ESP).Â The Early Settlement Panel consists of two volunteer attorneys selected from a rotating list of experienced divorce law practitioners who will listen to a brief recitation of your case from the attorneys representing you and your spouse.Â The Panelists will then make recommendations to you and your spouse regarding how to best resolve any open issues between the two of you.Â For example, the Panelists are frequently helpful in settling both the amount and duration of alimony to be paid.
IfÂ the parties ultimately still cannot reach agreement, their matter will be resolved by way of a trial before a New Jersey Superior Court Judge.Â In some cases, rather than going to trial, the parties might agree to binding arbitration with a mutually agreed upon arbitrator.Â The reality is that the vast majority of divorce cases in New Jersey settle short of trial somewhere during the process.
Given the emotionally charged nature of divorce work, as well as the complexity of the issues sometimes presented, New Jersey divorce practice can be quite challenging.Â Frequently, prospective clients have no real understanding of what their rights or obligations may be or how the process itself unfolds.
About Jeffrey R. Brown, Attorney at Law
Admitted: 1998, New Jersey and U.S. District Court, District of New Jersey
Law School: Benjamin N. Cardozo School of Law, J.D., 1998
College: Rutgers University, B.A., 1995
Member: Middlesex County (Member, Family Law Section) and New Jersey State (Member, Family Law Section) Bar Associations
Biography: Law Clerk, Hon. Vincent LeBlon, Superior Court, Family Law Division, 1998-1999
Jeffrey R. Brown has been a member of the Middlesex County Assignment Judge's Family Law Committee since 2005.
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4 Cornwall Drive, Suite 101
East Brunswick NJ 08816