January 09, 2013 /24-7PressRelease/
-- The Push for Alimony Reform in New Jersey
In June 2012, the New Jersey Assembly unanimously passed a bill to create a blue-ribbon commission to study the state's alimony laws and give recommendations to the legislature on how to update them. A companion bill is working its way through the New Jersey Senate. Supporters of the measure believe the time has come to modernize the state's alimony system to eliminate what many believe are injustices it causes. Activists are also pushing for more reform to the state's alimony laws.
Commission Proposed to Study Alimony Laws
The bill approved by the Assembly would create an 11-member panel to study the state's alimony laws. At least two of the members would be family-law experts and one of the panelists would be a retired family law judge. The panel would have a year to analyze the state's alimony laws, trends in alimony awards and whether the recession has affected alimony awards. The commission would also compare New Jersey's alimony laws with other states' laws. The commission would then prepare a report with recommendations for reform for the legislature and the governor.
Those who support the creation of a commission to study the state's laws believe that lawmakers should be fully informed before attempting to make any changes to the current system. While anecdotal stories of people crippled by unfair spousal support obligations abound, family-law experts note that several examples of spouses receiving support who have suffered unfair treatment also exist. Having a commission study the matter will help ensure that both sides' positions are accurately represented.
Proposed Changes to Alimony Modification
Alimony reform supporters are also trying to pass a measure dealing with modifying alimony and child support awards. The bill would allow people to petition for modifications in the amounts they pay if they have lost a job or are disabled for more than six months. The bill would codify the criteria for assessing changed circumstances in alimony modification cases established by the New Jersey Supreme Court in a 1980 decision. The bills are before the Judiciary Committees in both the Assembly and the Senate.
Talk to a Lawyer
The financial aspects of divorce can feel overwhelming. It is often difficult for people to make financial decisions when they are experiencing the upheaval that divorce often brings to all aspects of a person's life. If you are considering divorce, seek the assistance of a seasoned divorce attorney who can help protect your best interests and ensure that property division and support obligations are fair.
Article provided by The Law Offices of Smith & Doran, P.C.
Visit us at http://www.smithanddoranlaw.com---
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