We are proud to offer a selection of blogs covering different geographies and areas of the law. Please see below for a brief description of each, or jump to our recent posts.
New Jersey Family Law Blog
Fox Rothschild's New Jersey Family Legal 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.
View the New Jersey Family Law Blog
Pennsylvania Family Law Blog
The Pennsylvania Family Law Blog provides readers with information on and insight into Pennsylvania Family Law issues, including divorce, equitable distribution, alimony, child support, spousal support, alimony pendente lite, and custody.
View the Pennsylvania Family Law Blog
Recent Blog Posts
- No Prima Facie Showing of Cohabitation = No Right to Discovery to Try to Prove It For the second time in about a month, the Appellate Division has reversed improvidently granted discovery when there hadn’t been a showing of a change of circumstance. As noted by Eliana Baer on this blog on August 12, 2019 (about a case she and I were involved in) in a post entitled Appellate Division Rules: No Custody Evaluation Without Finding of Changed Circumstances , when the trial court found that the father failed to meet his burden of showing a... More
- DIVORCE AND COLLEGE: Can They Be Reconciled? Whenever I start these kinds of articles, I stop to ask, “Is this subject really relevant to the process of divorce?” Separation and divorce are realities of modern day life. Education of the children who come into this world through marriage is not just a major expense. For any caring parent, it is also a major responsibility. Unfortunately higher education is also an increasingly troublesome responsibility. I graduated from George Washington University in 1977. My expenses were roughly $5,000 a year,... More
- Appellate Division Rules: No Custody Evaluation Without Finding of Changed Circumstances Last week, Eric Solotoff and I achieved victory in the Appellate Division in the unreported (non-precedential) decision of Gatto v. Breton, wherein the Court reversed the trial court’s order permitting the Plaintiff father to obtain a custody evaluation without the requisite finding of changed circumstances. By way of background, the parties were divorced in 2011 following a brief marriage. They have one son, who is 14 years old. The boy lives primarily with the Defendant mother in Bergen County and spends... More
- In Divorce: What’s A Reasonable Return on Invested Cash? This debate is as old as “guns vs. butter” but it has intensified in the past decade as interest yields have collapsed. As we “head to the Fed” meeting next month a 10 year treasury note gets you 2.06% and we are told that a rate cut is on the way. There was a time when you could buy a stock like GE and get a good yield plus some hope for appreciation. That time ended two years ago. This trend... More
- Northwestern Mutual: THE 10 YEAR VIEW OF AMERICA Hopefully, or perhaps, despondently, all of us recall early 2009. The stock market crash of 2008 hit bottom in early 2009, and, thankfully, we began to emerge from the greatest financial crisis of our lifetimes. In 2009, the broad S&P 500 Index was working its way back to 1,000; a low it had not seen since 2003. Today it closed at 3,000 which means that if you had $1 invested, then it today is worth $3, a triple in baseball... More
- LIVE-IN CHILDCARE PROVIDERS QUALIFY AS “HOUSEHOLD MEMBERS” UNDER THE PREVENTION OF DOMESTIC VIOLENCE ACT Hot off the press! A published (precedent setting) trial court decision, E.S. v. C.D. confirms that live-in childcare providers qualify as household members under the Prevention of Domestic Violence Act (“PDVA”). What does this mean? A restraining order can be entered against an employee who has lived with their employer even though the parties do not have a familial relationship, the economic relationship has ended, and the employee may not have an expectation of continuing contact or relationship with the employer... More
- So, You Think You Don’t Have to Share That Inheritance? One of the more complex issues we see when addressing alimony and equitable distribution relates to inherited assets and the money (distributions, investment experience, interest, etc.) that emanates from them. Under New Jersey law, inherited assets remain the exempt, separate property of the spouse who inherited same. It cannot be distributed in whole or in part to the other spouse in the event of a divorce. See N.J.S.A. 2A:34-23(h). However, there is an exception to every rule. If an asset is commingled with... More
- SUMMER FUN BECOMES SUMMER ANGUISH The photo of 25-year-old Albert Almora a few days ago tells the story best. The 25-year-old Chicago Cubs outfielder has his head in his hands as he copes with the fact that his line drive foul ball struck and fractured the skull of a two-year-old in Houston. It could scarcely be more personal for Almora, who is himself the father of a two-year-old child. Today, another story of summer fun gone awry. A 14 year old from Raleigh North Carolina was... More
- Make Sure to Enter QDROs At The Time of Divorce We recently received a favorable appellate decision on behalf of our client whose ex-husband tried to manipulate their divorce agreement regarding distribution of his New Jersey PERS pension (“pension”) nearly three decades after the agreement was signed. We did not represent her at the time of the divorce, but did represent her to defend against this frivolous post-judgment litigation. The unpublished decision of Tapanes v. Perez is an important reminder to have your Qualified Domestic Relations Orders (“QDRO” – the Order that enables... More
- The Inability or Refusal to Settle By the Lawyer, Not the Litigant In one of the earliest posts I did on this blog going back ten years or more, I posited that you can only really settle when the time is right and when both parties are ready. In fact, I felt then as I feel now, that you can make your best offer, if not an offer that is the other side’s best offer, on day one, and if the other side isn’t ready to settle, the case wont settle. Worse... More
- PENSION JUSTICE DONE; BUT ALONG A ROCKY ROAD On April 30, 2019, the Superior Court published a panel decision related to a retirement benefit divided in divorce. This wasn’t just any pension, but one established for a Pennsylvania municipality. As this author learned in organizing a recent seminar for the Doris Jonas Freed American Inn of Court, municipal pensions are a very special and unwieldy animal. The decision in Conway v. Conway v. City of Erie Police Relief & Pension Association demonstrates why. The facts are easy. The Conway’s... More
- Domestic Violence Defendants Require Opportunity To Prepare Defense Even When FRO Is Warranted For Another Predicate Act I have now blogged a few times about the importance for due process in domestic violence matters. The Appellate Division just gave us another unpublished case, B.L.F. v. T.G.C., to remind litigants and practitioners that the plaintiff in a domestic violence action is limited to the four corners of the Temporary Restraining Order (“TRO”) and, if the TRO is amended or the plaintiff testifies about incidents outside of those four corners, the defendant must be given the option to have... More
- Negotiating Future College Contributions in Divorce: A Cautionary Tale A recent Appellate Division case reminds us of the potential pitfalls of negotiating contingent issues in property settlement agreements, specifically as it relates to contribution to future college costs of children born of the marriage. In Zegarski v. Zegarski, the parties had four children, with the two oldest already attending in-state college at the time of their divorce. Their post judgment litigation stemmed from a disagreement about their respective contributions to the college costs of their third child, four years after... More
- Religion and Divorce: Raising Children of Interfaith Marriages Post-Divorce Raising children born of interfaith marriages can have its challenges (and of course, its unique joys – Chrismukkah, anyone?), but at least parents in intact families navigate and mediate these challenges together. If and when parents of different religious faiths divorce, the questions of whether and how to raise the children in a particular religion while respecting the traditions of both parents and their families are difficult ones to answer. New Jersey’s case law on this subject is straightforward. The case... More
- The Futility of Parent Coordination When a Parent Coordinator Won’t Be Decisive I have written many times over the years regarding parent coordination, both during and after the end of the Supreme Court pilot program. A parent coordinator is a person, sometimes a mental health professional and sometimes a lawyer, that is appointed to assist parties in high conflict custody disputes. The description and function of a parenting coordinator under the pilot program were as follows: A Parenting Coordinator is a qualified neutral person appointed by the court, or agreed to by the... More