My Divorce Settlement; What Am I Entitled To?
In divorce, there are so many factors to consider, so many potential outcomes, it’s easy to feel overwhelmed at times. Finalizing a Divorce Settlement can be one of the most complicated aspects of the divorce, and at the same time be the most impactful on your life moving forward. Many people are unaware of exactly what they are entitled to, and what they will be expected to give up. Aside from child custody and visitation rights, understanding your financial rights regarding property division, child support, and spousal support will have the most impact on your divorce settlement expectations.
Division of Assets
Division of assets is probably the most changeable of all topics between different divorce cases. There are many factors unique to a couple’s’ financial situation which will modify what to expect when settling the divorce. Although New Jersey is an equitable distribution state, this does not mean that property is divided equally in half, rather that the two sides will receive a similarly valued amount assets. But who evaluates the property? How much is the family business really worth, its possible its worth more to one party than it is to the other.
There is much more to property division than simply dividing a home and a bank account. Complex property division involves retirement assets and investment accounts, credit card and other debt accrued during the marriage. Additionally you need to consider how obtaining certain assets will affect your tax liability, and both short-term and long-term cash flow.
Not only is having an experienced divorce attorney highly recommended through this process, it is also important that you find an attorney who will consult with expert financial analysts, people who can properly evaluate assets, and recommend a sound course of action moving forward.
Our family law team at Townsend Tomaio & Newmark includes divorce and asset division lawyers who focus specifically on distribution of marital assets. In fact, Partner Paul H. Townsend a respected resource in this area, has been published in the informational treatise Forensic Accounting in Matrimonial Divorce. With powerful knowledge and resources behind us, we can effectively tackle cases involving high net worth divorce and complex property distribution.
When it comes to determining child support in New Jersey, it is somewhat more clear than division of assets but still has room for interpretation. Child support is governed by what are known as the Child Support Guidelines. You can use an online calculator to get a rough estimate of what to expect, but this estimate will usually only reflect a minimum standard of obligation, and may not be enough to realistically meet the expectations you have for your child’s future. Especially since peripheral things like braces, school supplies, daycare etc are not usually factored into this calculation.
The best way to secure your child’s financial future is to consult with experienced family law attorneys. They will be able to help you gather evidence of past expenses, present a realistic expectation of need to the judge, and work with you to find the best possible outcome for you and your family.
The last financial element to consider in a divorce is spousal support, also referred to at times as alimony or spousal maintenance. There are situations in which one spouse will have forgone a career in order to focus on maintaining the household, and will be entitled to an amount of the marital income after the divorce. But how much exactly are you or your spouse entitled to? In almost every state there is no concrete formula or guideline for calculating alimony, although the law does state that both parties of the marriage are entitled to live in roughly the same standard of living they enjoyed prior to the divorce. This generally implies that you will never find a situation where one spouse is enjoying a life of luxury and convenience while the other struggles to survive. Since spousal support is open to such legal interpretation, it is highly recommended that you retain experienced legal counsel when determining exactly how much alimony will be owed as part of your divorce settlement.
Contact an Experienced Divorce Attorney with Offices in Morristown NJ
Townsend, Tomaio & Newmark is one of the largest and most well-equipped family law firms in the state of New Jersey. Our New Jersey divorce attorneys have the skill and experience to handle the most complex and contentious divorce situations, as we tackle critical issues ranging from child custody, to alimony, child support, and division of assets.
Our practice is built on the fundamental understanding that each case is entirely unique, and each client brings his or her own priorities and concerns. As a result, we tailor our strategies to best suit you and your family, and customize solutions that best serve your needs.
Contact us online today or contact our offices in Morris County at 973-840-8970 for a free, confidential consultation. One of our seasoned New Jersey divorce attorneys will be happy to discuss your case, answer your questions, and outline your available options.