New Jersey Divorce & Separation
Separations and divorces are common occurrences in every state, of course. However, each state has different laws and procedures that govern these. If you are contemplating separation or divorce in New Jersey, knowing the specific state laws is the first step. What are the requirements for getting a divorce in New Jersey? Is mediation a requirement before you can get a New Jersey divorce? Are there any simplified or accelerated divorce proceedings available in New Jersey? What is New Jersey law on annulments? Find the answers to your questions about divorce in New Jersey here.
New Jersey Legal Separation:
Legal separations are allowed in New Jersey. The court will adjudicate all issues involved in the separation in the same way it would in a divorce.
Grounds for Divorce/Fault - No Fault:
New Jersey requires fault-based grounds for divorce. A divorce based on fault requires a much more detailed and specific reason than the no-fault standards allowed in most other states. Examples of such fault-based causes include: adultery, a felony conviction, abandonment for more than 1 year, habitual drug or alcohol abuse, imprisonment for over 18 months, mental institutionalization for over 2 years, extreme cruelty, and deviant sexual conduct.
Residency/Where to File for Divorce:
Either party must have been a resident of New Jersey for at least 1 year before filing the complaint/petition. The complaint/petition should also be filed in a county where either party resides. The New Jersey Superior Court for that particular county will have jurisdiction over all aspects of the divorce proceeding.
Availability of Simplified or Special Divorce Procedures:
Specialized or accelerated divorce proceedings are not available in New Jersey.
New Jersey Divorce/Child Support/Child Custody Lawyers:
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Divorce Mediation in New Jersey:
The New Jersey courts will order all New Jersey parents filing for divorce to attend a "Parents' Education Program" in separate sessions whenever children are involved in a divorce. Additionally, mediation may be ordered if the court deems that there are issues that could be resolved and agreed upon amicably through a mediation conference. The motivation behind mediation, as in other states, is to avoid having the parties, children, and court system entangled in painful and expensive litigation when not absolutely necessary.
New Jersey Annulment:
An annulment is a court declaration that a marriage is legally invalid. In other words, rather than ending a marriage via divorce, a court may declare via an annulment that the marriage was never valid to begin with. Reasons for an annulment can include fraud, duress, a party's minor status, or consanguinity.
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