Myths About Getting Divorced
Contact a Passaic County Divorce and Family Law Attorney early on in the process so that you are aware of your rights during and after a divorce.
In the initial stages of the divorce process, even prior to attorneys being retained and getting involved, anyone and everyone are going to have an opinion on how things should be handled and what your outcome in the divorce is likely to be. Relatives and friends will be quick to offer their ‘facts’ about custody, distribution, and alimony before you even have a chance to wrap your head around the situation. However, more likely than not, all of these ‘facts’ are going to be wrong. Thus, it is important to contact an attorney early on in the process so that you are enlightened as to your rights during and after a divorce.
How is Child Custody Determined?
Many people erroneously believe that during a divorce, it is always the mother that will get custody of the child(ren) born of the marriage. However, custody is not determined by the sex of the parent but rather, on multiple factors that the court takes into consideration when making a custody determination. First and foremost, it should be noted that legally, both parents are allowed equal time and access to the child(ren). The courts firmly believe that it is always in the child(ren)’s best interest to have both parents to be actively involved in the child(ren)’s life so long as both are fit to parent.
Nonetheless, if joint legal and residential custody is not feasible and custody becomes an issue, the court will consider a number of factors before making its determination. For example, in this day and age, it is just as likely for the Wife to earn a higher salary and for the Husband to stay at home with the child(ren). Thus, the court will first consider which parent has been the primary caretaker of the child(ren) during the marriage, especially the months leading up to the filing of the Complaint. The primary caretaker is the parent that has been the most involved in the day to day activities of the children, i.e. making them breakfast, taking them to school, doing their homework, putting them to bed e.t.c. This factor, among others, will eventually help the court determine with whom the child(ren) should reside.
How to handle Alimony related issues?
Another hot topic of conversation among family and friends is alimony. Most people are under the impression that ex-wives are always entitled to alimony for prolonged periods of time. A friend or a family member is likely to have a story about a friend of a friend that can barely survive because of the amount of alimony he has to pay his ex-wife. The first thing to remember is that any and all divorces are case-specific. No two parties have accumulated the same assets and / or liabilities, have the same exact income, or maintained the same lifestyle during the marriage. Therefore, just because Husband A pays $1,000.00 a month in alimony, it is not true that Husband B is also going to have to pay $1,000.00 a month in alimony. Alimony, like custody, is based on a number of factors, of which, income/assets, is just one. Also, there is nothing in the law that states that if alimony is an issue, only the Wife is entitled to the same. The determination as to which spouse, if any, is entitled to alimony is again, not based on the sex of the party but rather, among other things, the financial need of party and the other party’s financial ability to pay.
Finally, one of the hardest things to deal with during a divorce is if the divorce itself is due to one spouse’s extramarital affair. Many people believe that if one spouse cheated than the other spouse is going to be able to get everything that they want in the divorce. However, this is completely false. New Jersey is a no-fault state and therefore, the reason for the divorce does not have an impact on the equitable distribution of the marital property.
Get in touch with a seasoned Little Falls, NJ Divorce Attorney for a Free Consultation
For more insight into your rights during the divorce and thereafter, and for help differentiating from myth and fact, contact us today at 973-233-4396 or toll-free at 888-877-7985 for a free initial consultation. We also provide flexible appointment options at our centrally-located offices in Little Falls, New Jersey.