Uncontested Divorce in New Jersey
Like the name implies, an uncontested divorce occurs when both spouses agree on all the principal issues:
It is also possible to be granted an uncontested divorce if one of the partners fails to appear in court after being served with divorce papers.
The benefits of an uncontested divorce are twofold:
- Even when complex issues are involved, an uncontested divorce is less costly.
- An uncontested divorce moves through the court system more quickly.
Requirements for an Uncontested New Jersey Divorce
There are certain basic requirements that must be met when you file for divorce in New Jersey:
- At least one of the spouses must have been a resident of New Jersey for at least one year.
- When filing for divorce in New Jersey, you must state the ground, or legal cause, for wanting the divorce.
No-Fault Grounds for Divorce
In New Jersey there are two no-fault grounds for divorce: irreconcilable differences and separation. There are also fault grounds for divorce, but these are more likely to result in a contested divorce.
“Irreconcilable Differences” is commonly stated as a ground for divorce. Put simply, this means that the spouses have differences that they have been unable to resolve and which they feel cannot be resolved.
An 18-month separation, which is subject to proof that the couple was actually living apart, is also a no-fault ground for divorce.
Issues to be Resolved
In order to achieve an uncontested divorce, it is necessary for both parties to work together cooperatively and to communicate openly and honestly. Each must be flexible so that the needs of both spouses as well as those of any children involved are met.
Just as in a contested divorce, many issues must be addressed:
Both spouses must discuss and agree upon these and other parenting issues:
- Living arrangements
- Religious services and education
- School and extra-curricular activities
- Future educational needs
- Children’s health and emotional needs
- Transportation responsibilities
Division of Assets
In order for an equitable agreement to be reached, it is crucial that both parties are honest in the evaluation of their financial resources and other assets. It will be necessary to provide proof of your assets and liabilities. These are some of the factors to be taken into consideration:
- Mortgages and home-equity loans
- Retirement accounts and pensions
- Bank accounts
- Credit-card debt
- Student loans
- Valuable items, such as jewelry and artwork
Once the divorcing spouses have agreed to all of the issues involved, a New Jersey no-fault divorce can be achieved. If the parties cannot reach an agreement, then the divorce will be considered contested and will co to court. Remember, however, that an agreement can be reached at any time until the judge issues a final divorce order.
If you are seeking an uncontested divorce and need help drafting an agreement or if you have drafted an agreement but would like a professional to review the document to be certain that all the pertinent information has been included, the knowledgeable divorce lawyers at Aretsky Law Group, P.C., are here to help. We will carefully analyze the document and use your information to create a marital settlement agreement. If your spouse’s attorney has already drafted such an agreement, we will review it to be sure that your needs have been met.
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Contact Aretsky Law Group, P.C., today to speak with a divorce lawyer. We are available to take your call 24 hours a day, 7 days a week. Call us at 800-537-4154 to schedule a free initial consultation.