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Eric is the editor and also regularly contributes to the New Jersey Family Legal Blog. This blog provides practical information and useful tips related to such topics as alimony, child support, custody, parenting time, divorce, equitable distribution, prenuptial agreements, domestic violence, and grandparent visitation. This blog is an excellent resource for individuals with New Jersey specific family law questions and advisors whose clients may encounter family law issues.

Recent Blog Posts

  • Palimony Isn’t Alimony – Having a Long Term Relationship Alone Doesn’t Give You a Right to Support Many people think that palimony is just alimony with a “P” and that the mere existence of a long term unmarried relationship, where the people live together, is enough to convey some right of support.  Having argued the landmark Maeker v. Ross case regarding palimony in the New Jersey Supreme Court, I have made clear on this blog in the past that that is not the case.  Rather, for relationships that existed before 2010, their had to be a promise,... More
  • The New Years Resolution Divorce For many divorce attorneys, the busy season starts after the first of the year. For the last several years, I have posted on the phenomenon of the New Year’s Resolution Divorce. For whatever reason, this post has struck a chord and has been both well received and cited by other bloggers. As such, given that the new year is near, I thought I would share that piece again, updated slightly for the new year. Over the years, I have noted that... More
  • A Victim of Domestic Violence Need Not Have Disclosed the Abuse to Another to Establish a Predicate Act of Domestic Violence Victims of abuse have many reasons for not reporting prior acts of domestic violence – either to friends, family, co-workers, etc. or the police.  Logically, the failure to report does not negate the fact that the abuse happened.  One would think that judges hearing domestic violence, more so than most people, would not that given the domestic violence training that they receive, as well as their training in the law. Yet this is exactly what happened in the trial court as... More
  • If the Enforceability of a Prenuptial Agreement is at Issue, Courts Shouldn’t Wait to Deal With It Prior to the walk down the aisle for the happiest day of their lives – to that point – many hopeless romantics decide (or are required by their parents) to get a prenuptial agreement which set forth many of their rights and responsibilities in the event of death or divorce.  Typically, a prenuptial agreement has provisions wherein one or both parties knowingly waive rights that they would otherwise have upon death or divorce if there was no prenup.  Put another... More
  • If You Want to Keep Your Final Restraining Order, Maintaining a Sexual Relationship with the Defendant Is a Bad Idea More than 11 years ago, I wrote a post on this blog entitled The Abuse and Misuse of the Domestic Violence Statute. From the statistics, we can see that this is still one of the most read items we have published, because the problem remains 11 + years later.  I concluded that post by stating: At the end of the day, the domestic violence statute is an important and necessary tool to protect victims of domestic violence.  That said, it should... More
  • Income for Support Purposes Includes Bonuses and Deferred Compensation – Well No Kidding We see it all of the time.  The support (alimony and child support) obligor’s income is made up of multiple components – typically salary, bonus and/or deferred compensation.  In cases where the bonus/deferred comp makes up only a small portion of the total yearly income, you usually wont see too much fighting about what the income to use for support purposes should be.  On the other hand, when the majority of the income comes from bonuses and/or deferred compensation, that’s... More
  • Even At a Default Hearing, An Expert Report is Inadmissable Hearsay if the Expert Doesn’t Testify Very often, uncertified expert reports are attached to certifications and courts are asked to accept them though there is no ability to cross examine the expert, etc.  Sometimes, that even happens at a default or other hearing.  That is, a party tries to put the report into evidence without any testimony – direct or cross-examination of the expert.  A default hearing occurs for a few reasons.  Sometimes, the defendant never actually answers the Complaint. Other times, a party is defaulted... More
  • If You Want A Right to Appeal an Arbitration Award, Build it Into Your Arbitration Agreement Many people opt for binding arbitration because it is supposedly faster and cheaper, and binding – thus final.  Some people have to arbitrate their matters that they cannot settle amongst themselves, because there are issues that they cannot try before a court given the court’s mandatory obligation to report certain matters to the proper authorities (e.g. taxing authorities). While many people seek the finality of a binding result, many others are concerned that because an arbitrator is human, she/he could... More
  • Alimony Formulas: Yet Another Cautionary Tale Over the years, I have blogged about alimony formulas, “rules of thumb” and similar ways that alimony is settled.  I say settled, because in most instances, courts are not allowed to use a formula to determine alimony.  Basically, there are two types of formulas that we often see.  One takes a percentage of the differences in the parties’ income (or imputed incomes) to come to a fixed amount of alimony to be paid.  The other – often used in cases... More
  • NJ Divorce Court State of Play After 6 Months of COVID 19 Restrictions Two common questions I hear from potential clients, as well as the general public, are (1) are the courts open and (2) can people even file new matters (divorce, enforcement, modification, etc.) Some express shock when then learn that the Courts never actually closed – well sort of. In March and early April, there was, let’s say, a hiccup of sorts as both the courts, attorneys and litigants got used to working remotely and dealing with court business remotely.  The Court... More