Were You The Victim Of Coercion Or Fraud That Caused You To Sign An Unfair Divorce Settlement

If your ex-spouse used misrepresentations, lies, coercion, threats or violence to get you to sign an unfair divorce settlement, then you can seek to vacate the terms of your agreement. Under New Jersey Court Rule 4:50-1, a court may relieve a party from a final judgment or order for the following reasons: “(a) mistake, inadvertence, surprise, or excusable neglect; (b) newly discovered evidence which would probably alter the judgment or order and which by due diligence could not have been discovered in time to move for a new trial under R. 4:49; (c) fraud (whether heretofore denominated intrinsic or extrinsic), misrepresentation, or other misconduct of an adverse party; (d) the judgment or order is void; (e) the judgment or order has been satisfied, released or discharged, or a prior judgment or order upon which it is based has been reversed or otherwise vacated, or it is no longer equitable that the judgment or order should have prospective application; or (f) any other reason justifying relief from the operation of the judgment or order”. R. 4:50-1. Depending upon which claim you are asserting with respect to vacating the terms of your Agreement, you may be barred from bringing such an application due to the timing of when you are filing your motion. Specifically, if you are seeking relief under paragraphs (a), (b) or (c) of R. 4:50-1, said applications must be filed not more than one (1) year after the Property Settlement Agreement was entered. With respect to the remaining claims under R. 4:50-1, said relief must be sought within a “reasonable” time frame. If you feel that you did not receive a fair settlement due to misrepresentations or coercion exerted by your ex-spouse, schedule a consultation with an experienced attorney to determine what rights you have to vacate the settlement. You should not feel like you have no possible relief available and that you are stuck with an unfair settlement. [posted by Lynda Picinic, Esq.]