What is Rehabilitative Alimony in New Jersey?
For spouses going through a divorce, the issue of alimony and spousal support is common. However, many people do not realize that there are actually five types of alimony agreements pursuant to New Jersey divorce law. In addition to the common limited duration alimony and open duration alimony, there is also reimbursement alimony, temporary alimony during divorce, and rehabilitative alimony. Today, our alimony attorneys will be defining rehabilitative alimony, discussing how it can fit into a larger overall alimony agreement, and outline some scenarios and potential complications which may come into play.
Morris County, NJ Divorce Attorneys Define Rehabilitative Alimony
Of the five types of alimony, rehabilitative alimony and reimbursement alimony are the most specific. Rehabilitative alimony is generally awarded for short term marriages which allows financial consideration for a spouse who may not be prepared for life as a financially independent individual. While there is no hard and fast rule, rehabilitative alimony is awarded most frequently when marriages lasted between three (3) and six (6) years. Your Morris County divorce attorney may recommend rehabilitative alimony when a spouse needs short term financial assistance to help get back on their feet.
Another part of why rehabilitative alimony is so specialized comes down to how the money is meant to be spent. Rehabilitative alimony is intended to improve the recipient’s employability, level of education, level of training, and so forth. Support payments are commonly used to enroll in higher education courses at trade schools, universities, community colleges, or to pursue a certification. In other words, rehabilitative alimony payments are intended to help a former spouse prepare for or improve his or her career.
Can I Receive More than One Form of Alimony in New Jersey?
Our Morris County alimony and spousal support attorneys have seen some cases where multiple forms of alimony were awarded within a single alimony agreement. It is possible for a former spouse to receive both rehabilitative alimony and reimbursement alimony or limited duration alimony. It is much less likely that an alimony agreement would contain terms for rehabilitative and open duration alimony however. This is due to the fact that rehabilitative alimony’s purpose is to provide the recipient with the opportunity to make enough money as to no longer require alimony. Combining this with the more permanent open duration alimony makes little sense.
Finally, temporary alimony is considered on its own as temporary agreements terminate upon the finalization of your divorce. The nature of your alimony agreement will reflect the unique nature of your marriage and your divorce. By working with a qualified Morris County alimony attorney, you and your spouse can come to a reasonable alimony agreement which will protect the future of both parties.
Chester Rehabilitative Alimony Lawyers Discuss Extension of Alimony
As discussed above, the purpose of rehabilitative alimony is to allow a dependent spouse the opportunity to improve their career and therefore their finances. This then begs the question: what if the rehabilitation period is unsuccessful? In some cases, even after the rehabilitative alimony period has ended, the receiving party may be struggling financially, unable to find appropriate work, and may still be in financial need. In these cases, your Chester rehabilitative alimony lawyer may recommend a best course of action based on the reason why the rehabilitation period was ineffective.
Let us take two common examples:
The rehabilitative alimony recipient squanders the alimony payments. Let us first examine the scenario where the dependent party chose to spend alimony payments on items unrelated to career advancement. In this case, a request to extend alimony payments will almost certainly be denied. The recipient did not take advantage of, nor did they attempt to take advantage of the opportunity given to them through rehabilitative alimony.
The rehabilitative alimony recipient graduated or completed training and is struggling. On the other hand, it is quite possible that the recipient of rehabilitative alimony made a wholehearted effort through schooling, career training, or certification, and is still having a difficult time finding appropriate employment. In this situation, it is quite possible for alimony to be extended as necessary to accommodate further training, education, etc.
Contact our Morristown Rehabilitative Alimony Attorneys Today
The alimony and spousal support attorneys of Townsend, Tomaio & Newmark take pride in protecting the legal rights of clients from local Morris County communities including Harding, Mendham, Morris Township, Morristown, Chester, Chatham, and all of Northern New Jersey. Our qualified and experience legal team come from diverse legal backgrounds, but all focus on exclusively divorce and family law matters. This unique, yet focused perspective allows us to provide ethical, high quality, and up-to-date legal service. We handle all manner of family law and divorce legal concerns including alimony, child custody, child support, marital agreements, domestic violence, and much more.
Please contact us online or call our Morristown, NJ office today at (973) 840-8970 for a free and confidential consultation with a member of our qualified legal team regarding your alimony or any other family law questions and concerns.