How Does New Jersey Divorce Compare to Other States?
Divorce laws are largely controlled by state regulations. While most states adhere to certain high level standards for what is considered a legal divorce, the cost, waiting period, and associated child custody, alimony, child support considerations can all vary greatly from one state to the next. Today, our Morristown divorce lawyers will be discussing New Jersey divorce statutes, how they differ from other states, and what impacts these differences can have on our clients.
If you or a loved one are going through any stage in the divorce process without legal support, call our office today for a free and confidential consultation to discuss how our divorce and family law attorneys may be able to best serve your individual needs.
Chester, NJ Divorce Attorneys Discuss Property Division by State
An example of the dramatic difference between state divorce regulations is the handling of property division. All 50 states adhere to one of two guiding principles when it comes to dividing marital assets: “equitable distribution” or “community property”. These statutes may effect division of owned properties, businesses, retirement assets, and even accrued debts depending on the situation.
New Jersey is an equitable distribution state, which means that marital assets are divided fairly, but not necessarily 50/50. According to our state laws, factors which can carry weight when finding equitable distribution can include the length of the marriage, assets which were owned by either spouse prior to the marriage, existing prenuptial and/or postnuptial agreements, employability and earning capacity of each spouse, and more.
While the majority of states also use some form of equitable distribution, there are eleven states that adhere to community property standards. In these states, property is either determined to be community property (owned equally by both spouses) or individual property (owned by one spouse individual). All community property is divided 50/50 regardless of other considerations. Although these laws have lost favor amongst the legal community, a few large and populous states including California, Texas, and Washington still use community property divorce laws.
Nuts and Bolts of Filing for Divorce in Morris County
Beyond the many legal differences to property division, child support, alimony, etc, there are also more mundane differences between divorce proceedings which affect every couple filing for divorce in New Jersey. Our Morris County Divorce lawyers identify some of the ins and outs of NJ divorce, and how they stack up when compared to other state regulations.
Grounds for divorce. New Jersey divorce applicants may file for “fault” or “no-fault” divorce. 17 states and Washington D.C. do not offer “fault” divorces at all, which eliminates the requirement to prove that there is sufficient cause for divorce. No-fault divorce is most common in New Jersey as well, as it is simpler, easier, and often times cheaper for the individual filing.
Waiting Period – with marriages lasting for six (6) or more months, there is no waiting period to be granted divorce in New Jersey. With at fault divorces, the 6 month requirement may be waived as well. The NJ court system attempts to keep processing times under a year. Compare this to Arkansas, which has a 540 day processing period after 18 months of separation, and New Jersey’s processing time doesn’t seem so bad.
Cost to File – Filing for divorce costs $250 in New Jersey, with each additional motion running $30 a piece. California filing fees are $435 with Wyoming coming in the rear at just $70.
Contact our Morristown Divorce and Family Law Attorneys Today
At The Law offices of Townsend, Tomaio & Newmark, our legal team practices divorce and family law exclusively. This allows us to focus our experience and knowledge on the issues that matter most to our local New Jersey clients across towns including Chester, Mendham, Morristown, Chatham, Harding, Morris Township and the greater Morris County area. Our founding partners have all been selected by the New Jersey Supreme Court as Certified Matrimonial Lawyers, an honor earned by just two percent of attorneys in our state.
Contact us online or through our Morristown offices today by calling (973) 840-8970 for a free and confidential consultation regarding questions or concerns you may have about your divorce or any family law matter.