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What You Need to Know About Alimony in New Jersey

Spousal support, otherwise known as alimony, can be a challenging concept. The purpose of alimony is to ensure that both parties can continue to live in the similar financial manner they did in their marriage. While no divorce is alike, there is also no alimony formula alike. If you are in the midst of a divorce and have questions or concerns regarding alimony, reach out to our experienced New Jersey family law attorneys today to discuss your best course of action moving forward. By learning your unique needs and priorities, the attorneys at Townsend, Tomaio & Newmark L.L.C. are able to find innovative solutions that will best serve you and your family.

What factors affect New Jersey’s alimony determination?

Alimony is a legal obligation of payment made from one ex-spouse to another after divorce. Initially, alimony was crafted to help women after divorce, however, alimony is now gender-neutral in New Jersey.

Alimony is not granted in every divorce circumstance. There are numerous factors that can determine whether a spouse may be required to pay alimony, and if so, for how long. Some of these factors may be:

  • The individual assets that each party is taking out of the marriage
  • The assets that each party brought into the marriage
  • The duration of the marriage
  • The education and earning potential of each party
  • The health of each party
  • The need of each party
  • The ability of either party to pay
  • The current income of each party
  • The historical earnings of each party
  • The standard of living and lifestyle of each party

Additionally, if both spouses share children, child custody arrangements and the respective responsibilities regarding child care for each party will also be considered as factors to be considered when making alimony determinations.

There is no concrete formula for determining alimony. Judges have broad discretion, however, and their determinations must be provided with a written explanation. Additionally, this process does best with the help of knowledgeable legal counsel.

New Jersey spousal support options

Alimony laws have been recently changed in New Jersey. The state has abolished “permanent” alimony because it was never supposed to be permanent. There are now four types of alimony structures including:

  • Open durational alimony: This type of alimony attracts dependant spouses in marriages lasting more than 20 years. This instruction has no end date, and can always be modified depending on changing circumstances regarding the financial needs of each party.
  • Limited durational alimony: Dependent spouses in short-term marriages may be entitled to this. The duration of the marriage, the age of the parties involved, and the earning capacity of each spouse are all taken into consideration.
  • Rehabilitative alimony: This short-term support structure is to assist the dependant spouse in reaching financial stability. For example, this kind of alimony can be used to help someone further their education.
  • Reimbursement alimony: This structure is used to pay the dependant party back for the support they have offered. For example, if one spouse worked while the other was in school, this support structure can reimburse them for the cost of supporting the spouse seeking higher education.


If you have any questions regarding your family law matter, you can depend on our legal team to fight for your best interests, every step of the way. Contact Townsend, Tomaio & Newmark L.L.C. today to learn more about how our legal team can assist you.