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Domestic violence exists and is real, and unfortunately, is common. This blog is not meant for the traditional domestic violence victim. The rights of true victims are rightly met with protections from the New Jersey Prevention of Domestic Violence Act, which allow for the implementation of a Final Restraining Order that prohibits contact and the presence of the perpetrator away from the victim.

Instead, this blog is to recognize that not all domestic violence complaints (referred to as Temporary Restraining Orders) are based on legitimate allegations warranting permanent relief with a Final Restraining Order and, moreover, have been used “as a sword as opposed to a shield” by purported “victims” at times notwithstanding the incredible burden Final Restraining Orders carry.

Final Restraining Orders in New Jersey, unlike in other states, are permanent. Many people understand the main purpose of a Final Restraining Order from its name’s literal interpretation, namely, that it keeps one person from being in the presence of or contacting the other person.


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Earlier this month, Amazon founder Jeff Bezos and his wife Mackenzie announced their plans to divorce, setting off speculation as to what would occur with their estimated $138 billion in net worth.

From a first glance, you may assume that the Bezos divorce would be much more acrimonious and hard fought than a case involving the typical John and Jane Doe case as the thought may be that there is more to fight for financially.

However, wealth in these incredibly high net worth cases actually removes many of the most challenging issues in divorce like payment of legal and expert fees or trying to continue the lifestyle for both parties with insufficient income from both parties to same to occur. The world’s richest couple will not have these challenges.

Instead, high net worth divorces have a whole different set of challenges that middle-class families typically do not need to consider.


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Many parents are confused in the midst of their divorce when the topic of “college contribution” comes into the conversation.

“My parents didn’t pay for my college expenses and I didn’t think I would have to pay for his (or hers)!”

In all likelihood, most people did not previously think of the possibility of being divorced, so it is not surprising that most people do not know how the courts deal with whether parents should contribute to their children’s college education costs and how they will be able to do so. New Jersey courts generally view college education as a necessity, and the trend in New Jersey is to require parents to pay the college costs for their children in line with their ability to do so.

This is surprising to many parents, especially if they paid their own way through college or other higher education themselves. I hear from many parents that they want their children to pay their way through for character building, or simply because the parent does not believe they can contribute and maintain their lifestyle. However, most divorced parents in New Jersey will be required to contribute to the costs of their children’s higher education regardless of their personal views.


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Social media surrounds almost all of us. Statistically speaking, over 70% of you reading this article are probably social media users, whether you utilize Facebook, Twitter, LinkedIn, Pinterest, MySpace, Google Plus, various dating websites, a combination of several of these, or numerous others. In this digital age where cell phones and tablet devices are so common place in everyday living, most with photo and video capturing capabilities, personal privacy has been extremely constricted, voluntarily or not.
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Filing the Complaint for Divorce often signifies the end of a marriage. It carries with it a certain stigma that the notion of love has gone and that a married couple will never be together again. However, it is not uncommon for parties in divorce to eventually reconcile and continue their marriage, whether because they did not want to get divorced before but felt forced in some way and/or they have decided to give the marriage another try.
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Divorce often means very large changes in a parent’s life. One day you are married and live with your children, the next day you are in the midst of a divorce. Invariably, the breakup of your marriage also means that the time you may have spent with your child or children as a family unit now must be split with your ex-spouse. Suddenly, in most instances, you must come to terms with the fact that you will not see your children every day.
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Child custody is commonly the most important issue to a parent going through a divorce. However, when parties do not have children, and are going through a divorce (or break-up, if never married), what do they consider the most important issue to resolve? Often, a beloved animal is considered part of the family, and a divorce or break-up results in questions about who gets to continue enjoying time with the pets. Courts, and the laws around the country, often consider pets to be property. New Jersey is not much different. Because pets are considered property, a pet’s worth may be determined by their market value. If you are reading this article, I doubt you feel this is adequate.
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Either party in a post-judgment divorce action may make an application to modify alimony and/or child support based upon a perceived substantial change in circumstances. The party seeking the modification has the ultimate burden of demonstrating that a change in circumstance has occurred which would warrant a modification or termination of that support obligation. A reduction or lack of income is a prominent reason why litigants believe they are entitled to relief. Courts often hold that persons are not entitled to a reduction or termination of their support obligation for two reasons: The reduction or lack of employment (1) cannot be shown to be permanent in nature, and/or (2) was voluntary, at least in part.
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