MEETING OPTIONS DURING THE CORONAVIRUS: The Law Offices of Peter Van Aulen understands your concerns regarding the spread of the Coronavirus, and now offers different meeting options to our clients and those seeking legal representation. All meetings, including initial free consultations, can be handled either through the phone, FaceTime, Zoom, or in person.

Articles Posted in Divorce

 

shutterstock_1010429098-300x187

Marriages made for and on TV generally do not last, and one of the most successful media-created marriages will soon come to an end. The Bachelorette Ashley Hebert dated 25 men during the TV series in 2011. In the end, she chose J.P. Rosenbaum, and he proposed to her on the final series episode. In 2012, they were married during a two-hour television special.

In July 2014, they moved from New York to Miami after real estate entrepreneur Rosenbaum received a job offer. The couple has two children. Their son, Fordham, is 6 and a daughter, Essex, recently turned 4.

While the couple stayed out of the spotlight for the most part, in 2017 they appeared on Marriage Boot Camp, another TV reality show. At the time, Rosenbaum said, “We have small issues like every couple has.” Ashley added that the couple agreed to be on the show to improve their relationship “even more.”

They renewed their vows during a trip to Aruba in 2018. In late 2019, Rosenbaum was diagnosed with Guillain-Barre syndrome, an autoimmune disorder that damages nerves causing muscle weakness and, on occasion, paralysis. After months of therapy, he appears to have substantially recovered. Continue Reading →

divorce-planning-300x225

The emotions you feel when you know that your marriage is ending can be complicated and overwhelming. Money may be the last thing on your mind when you are going through something so traumatic. However, you must not delay taking steps to protect your financial interests when you are sure that your marriage is coming to an end. Here are ten steps to take when preparing for divorce.

  1. Talk to an Attorney

The first thing that you should do is talk to an attorney. You may feel that legal advice will not be necessary because you believe that you and your spouse can sort things out between yourselves. However, a divorce can become acrimonious once the process has begun. So, it will be better to have an impartial adviser on your side to explain your rights and obligations.

  1. Open a New Bank Account

If you have a joint account with your spouse, you should open a bank account in your sole name as soon as possible. Closing joint accounts may not be possible immediately because you will likely have regular payments that will still need to be met. Even so, joint accounts and joint credit cards should be closed as soon as practicably possible. Keeping joint accounts open may lead to your spouse running up debts for which you will both be liable. Continue Reading →

shutterstock_1185179218-300x200

Going through a divorce can be one of the most difficult things that you will ever experience in life. In addition to being consumed by feelings of anger, disbelief, and/or sadness, you must go through the stressful process of breaking up your marriage, family, and assets. While some couples can face divorce with civility and maturity, unfortunately that is not often the case. However, the most important thing for you is to face the divorce process with confidence to make sure that you come out on the other side a better, stronger person.

Understand Your Legal Rights

Facing the divorce process with confidence starts by understanding your rights. For example, your ex-spouse might want everything: the house, full custody of the kids, and more than their fair share of support. However, just because your ex wants those things, it does not mean that you are legally required to agree to all those terms. The best way to fully understand your rights, as well as your state’s divorce laws, is to consult with a divorce attorney.

Don’t Fall into Despair

While some marriages end amicably, most divorces are very painful. In addition to the couple splitting up, it can be quite painful for kids and other family members too. If your marriage ended unexpectedly, you might go through stages of denial and disbelief. Anger and guilt are other common feelings that people experience during a divorce as well. Even though these are normal feelings to have after a broken marriage, you want to make sure that your life does not fall into despair. Just because your marriage ends, does not mean that is the end of your life and happiness. Therefore, no matter how bad you feel, no matter how much you might feel like giving up, you must find reasons to live. If you have children, think about them. You can also look at your divorce to start over in life with a fresh perspective on things. Nothing will hurt your confidence worse than allowing yourself to fall into despair. Continue Reading →

 

shutterstock_divorce-300x200

Since the early 1980s, the divorce rate in the U.S. has steadily declined. The long-held belief that at least 50% of marriages end in divorce is no longer true. Divorce Statistics collected in recent years by census reports, government and private studies and university research paint an interesting portrait of marriage and divorce in the United States.

Many states now have no-fault divorce laws. Spouses do not have to allege a specific reason for wanting a divorce other than having irreconcilable differences or that the marriage is irretrievably broken. However, some of the most common reasons that marriages fail include infidelity, addiction and abuse.

A majority of Americans claim that they would end their marriage if they discovered their spouse had cheated on them. Yet research shows that 50-60% of couples who have dealt with infidelity in their marriage found ways to overcome the issue and stay together.

Addictions may include, drugs, alcohol, porn, and gambling. A University of Buffalo study revealed that nearly 50% of couples divorced when only one partner drank heavily. Where partners had similar drinking habits, the divorce rate during the same period was 30%. Other research shows that if only one spouse smokes, a couple is 75-91% more likely to divorce. Continue Reading →

shutterstock_532240081-300x200

Stay-at-home orders, job losses and strained finances resulting from the ongoing coronavirus pandemic have increased the stress on marriages across the globe. While one might think that increased time together would have been welcomed by partners whose busy lives kept them apart much of the time, just the opposite is proving true. Rising divorce rates and coronavirus limitations appear to be directly related in countries that are now easing restrictions.

Several cities in China reported a surge in divorce filings once government-ordered lockdowns were lifted. A lawyer in Turkey claims divorce filings increased fourfold in that country following the imposition of quarantine restrictions. Many U.S. family therapists and attorneys expect the same trend to occur in this country.

Marriage counselors commonly encourage spouses to allow each other the freedom to socialize with separate friends and pursue favorite personal activities. For example, one spouse may enjoy jogging with a small group of long-time friends while the other may look forward to weekend golf with buddies from the office. Being involved at work or school, enjoying a favored activity and maintaining casual relationships outside of marriage are important to a person’s mental and physical health. Continue Reading →

shutterstock_1212428125-300x200

Entry of final papers in a divorce frequently triggers a variety of emotions. There may be a feeling of relief at having survived the legal process. Even when divorce is uncontested there is often a feeling of sadness from officially ending a relationship that once was special. There should also be feelings of hope and optimism as you embark on a journey to create a life after divorce.

Creating your new life means letting go of the old. Harboring resentment from actions taken or things said during the divorce process will only hold you back. Now is the time move forward, to set new goals, welcome new experiences and to revive the dreams of what you once hoped to accomplish in life. Certainly, you may need time to grieve over the loss of your marriage, but also view this life change as an opportunity to rediscover and reinvent yourself.

Your new life will require attention to practical matters but should also allow you to enjoy activities that, while married, you may have deemed impractical. On the practical side, you need to change your will and, possibly, the named beneficiaries on your life insurance. Joint accounts should be closed. You may need to obtain your own health insurance. Review your budget and monthly expenses taking into consideration any spousal or child support you may pay or receive. This process may have begun while the divorce was pending, but a quick re-evaluation may prove worthwhile. Continue Reading →

divorce-and-health-300x233

Divorce and Health Insurance

The availability and cost of health insurance for both children and soon-to-be former spouses should be considered in every divorce. Maintaining access to affordable health insurance consistently ranks near the top of consumer concerns. Child support laws vary by state. While every state requires parents to provide health insurance for their children, there is no legal obligation for one spouse to provide insurance coverage for the other spouse following divorce. However, several options exist to help ensure both spouses have adequate health care coverage after a marriage is terminated.

Insurance Coverage for Children

Federal and state laws require parents to maintain health insurance coverage for dependent children. The responsibility to pay for health insurance is often spelled out in a child support order entered at the end of a divorce proceeding. In some cases, both parents will be ordered to provide insurance if it is available at an affordable cost through an employer. Alternatively, one parent may be ordered to provide insurance with the other required to contribute to the cost based on income. If coverage is not available through employment, insurance must be obtained from the private market, Medicaid or the federal Children’s Health Insurance Program.

If both parents are able to obtain insurance, one policy may be designated for primary use with the other policy covering costs not paid by primary coverage. Since the parent who takes a child to the doctor will be expected to pay for services when rendered, parents are often advised to enter into a contract with the doctor that specifically outlines the percentage of co-payments and other uninsured costs for which each parent will be billed and expected to pay. The contract should be signed by both parents. Continue Reading →

group-theapy-300x200

If you are going through a divorce, chances are that you have already allied yourself with the usual suspects: a lawyer, a therapist, family members and old friends. But one of the best resources you can draw upon to give you strength during the divorce process is a divorce support group. Perhaps you have never heard of these. They are meetings of people going through a divorce, where individuals can share their stories and express their emotions in a neutral and supportive environment. Many churches or community centers offer these groups – it just might take a bit of digging to find out where and when they are held. Joining these groups can make a significant, positive impact on your emotional well-being during your case.

These groups can offer a number of benefits. First, they can be held in person or even online, meaning that you have no excuse to not attend. Deciding to do so is a major first step, and if you take the plunge, take a moment to praise yourself. Some groups might offer events that could help you, such as bringing in professional counsellors or legal experts to provide general information about going through a divorce. Others are more traditional, encouraging its members to be open about their experiences and share solutions and stories. Some might be able to provide you with professional resources or referrals. They provide a supportive community and keep you accountable for your actions and attendance. But most of all, they comprise of people who will listen to you with an empathetic ear. Each member in that group knows exactly what you are going through. Sometimes, just being able to acknowledge that you are not alone in your suffering can be incredibly healing. Continue Reading →

miltary-picture-300x207

In any divorce matter, the issue of retirement can be contentious. This is usually because it can be one of the largest assets in the marriage, particularly when the parties have been married long-term. When it comes to the division of military retirement, the regulations surrounding its division can be complex – especially when military disability is involved. The New Jersey Appellate division case of Fattore v Fattore discusses the various issues that can arise with military retirement and divorce.

The parties had been married over thirty-five years when they divorced in 1997. Their final judgment included a waiver of mutual alimony, which stated that they each waive alimony to each other now and in the future. Among other assets, each party’s pension was divided. Plaintiff, an operating room nurse, earned a modest pension, and she was to receive a one-half interest in the community portion of defendant’s pension, which had been offset against any equity she was going to receive in exchange for defendant keeping the marital resident (about $55,000.00). The defendant was a full-time member in the Army National Guard at the time of the divorce. A Qualified Domestic Relations Order (QDRO) was finalized in 1999. The defendant continued in his role in the Army for another three years until he became disabled in 2002. He was able to receive pension and disability without impacting his pension pay-out, and he was able to receive disability benefits, tax-free. A party opting for disability benefits in lieu of retirement payments are fairly regular occurrences in the context of military retirement and divorce.

The plaintiff never contacted the defendant to find out the status of the pension, and the defendant assumed that she had been receiving her share of the benefit. In 2010, the plaintiff contacted the Army and they responded that because a portion of the defendant’s pay is based on disability, it cannot be divided. It is an authorized deduction and so, there is nothing left for the property to be divided. She filed a motion to compel the defendant for compensation in 2016. At trial, the judge determined that although the situation was the fault of neither party, it was nevertheless unfair and appointed a pension appraiser to determine what her interest in the defendant’s pension would have been at the time of their final divorce judgment. In the interim, the defendant was required to pay her $1800 a month, which would be taken from any of his resources. This was not to be alimony, nor would alimony be required since both parties had waived their rights to it previously. Continue Reading →

Raising teenagers is a challenge on its own. Chances are your teen is already dealing with school issues, dating, hormones, and emotions that seem to change every minute. If you and your partner have decided to separate, it’s crucial that you talk with your teen as soon as possible about the divorce. This way, your child has time to process what’s happening. While it might make more sense to wait until the divorce is final, the truth is that your child likely already knows something is wrong or different at home. Sitting down and talking with your child will help provide stability, comfort, and understanding. Here are some suggestions on how to explain divorce to a teenager.

Sit down as a family

One of the most important things you can do for your child is to sit down as a family to tell your teen about the divorce. While you might not be on speaking terms with your spouse, it’s essential that you present a united front for your child. Sitting down together ensures you both know what you’re telling your child about the cause of the divorce. That also enables you to address any concerns or questions your child has at this time. Many children, even teenagers, feel unloved and afraid when they discover their parents are separating. Talk with your partner ahead of time and decide how you’re going to tell your child about the divorce. Then the three of you should sit down and have a long, honest, and open discussion about how your lives are going to change. Continue Reading →

Member Of
Super Lawyers Martindale-Hubbell New Jersey Supreme Court Certified Attorney

Peter Van Aulen was selected to the 2016 and 2017 Super Lawyers list. The Super Lawyers list is issued by Thomson Reuters. A description of the selection methodology can be found here. No aspect of this advertisement has been approved by the Supreme Court of New Jersey.

Peter Van Aulen has received a rating by Martindale Hubbell. A description of the rating methodology can be found here. No aspect of this advertisement has been approved by the Supreme Court of New Jersey.

Peter Van Aulen is certified by the New Jersey Supreme Court as a Matrimonial Attorney.

Contact Information