Some couples are comfortable making the decision to divorce but are unable to do so because of financial difficulties. Instead these individuals informally separate and live different lives. They remain married and may even live together, but they no longer function as a couple. If money was a concern during the marriage, more often than not, it will continue to be a concern after the marriage is ended. It is important that parties separate legally to protect what little money they have.
Five things you should consider when you are ready to end your marriage but are not prepared to institute formal divorce proceedings:
- Separation agreements should be in writing. Without a legal separation agreement, you have no control over how your spouse is handling marital assets. Particularly if the spouses are living apart – one of you is out of the financial loop entirely and the other spouse may be accumulating new debt that may or may not be classified as marital debt.
- Assets can be hidden. Long term separations, without a formal separation agreement, are a great way to hide assets. Through time, assets get diverted without the knowledge of the other spouse and one spouse may come out of an eventual marital dissolution with even less money or assets than he or she started.
- Things happen. At any time, your spouse’s circumstances may change. He or she can lose a job or have an accident and become disabled, diminishing marital assets or creating an additional financial burden.
- People change. Your spouse can move out of the state or country and may not even tell you. Abandonment claims are a ground for divorce but you have to wait additional time to file such a claim. If your spouse is hiding to avoid responsibility, you will have to undergo the additional expense of locating him or her to get resolution of any meaningful financial settlement.
- Maintenance laws or alimony laws change. The spouse seeking financial assistance receives the benefit of the law in place at time of filing. As state laws change, less maintenance is being awarded to the non-money spouse. Filing a matrimonial action or separation agreement preserves your financial rights.
Contact a New Jersey Dicorce and Family Law Lawyer
Helping Hackensack, NJ with all of their divorce and family law needs, the Family Law Attorney Hackensack is available at every step of your divorce, including child custody and visitation and the division of marital property and assets.
To obtain help obtaining a divorce, contact a Family Law Attorney in Hackensack to discuss your circumstances and seek legal representation. Schedule a confidential consultation today with a professional Family Law Attorney in Hackensack. Ask us about New Jersey’s child custody and visitation or parenting time laws and how they would affect your family.
The Family Law Attorneys in Hackensack can help you understand your rights during a child support or modification of child support proceeding. The Giro Law Firm provides legal services in a variety of divorce and family law matters, including contested divorces, prenuptial agreements, paternity testing, parental rights, adoption, spousal support, and civil union agreements.