In order to complete the divorce process, one must consider the topic of spousal support. There are many issues that become heated in a divorce case. Alimony is no exception. Often, parties disagree on who is entitled to what support. New Jersey courts award the dependent party a certain type of alimony based on his or her financial needs and earning capacity. Alimony, also known as spousal support, can be modified as circumstances change.
What are the different options for alimony in New Jersey?
If you are in the midst of a divorce or you are considering divorce, it is important that you have an understanding about how alimony may come into play. Alimony is a form of spousal support that may be temporarily ordered by the court in your divorce. New Jersey has recently changed the laws related to alimony. The state has abolished “permanent” alimony because it was never supposed to be permanent. Instead, it has installed the term “open-durational” to more adequately describe that type of alimony. New Jersey has four types of alimony structures, including:
- Open durational alimony: dependent spouses in marriages lasting more than 20 years may be entitled to this alimony. Though the structure has no end date, the amount of alimony and the end of the alimony can always be modified by changing circumstances to the financial need and the earning potential of each party.
- Limited durational alimony: Dependent spouses in short term marriages may be entitled to limited duration alimony. The award depends on the duration of the marriage, the age of the parties involved, and the earning capacity of each spouse. The purpose is to help one party become financially secure through a support structure with a limited time.
- Rehabilitative alimony: This is a short-term support structure to help the dependent spouse to reach financial stability. This type of alimony is usually used to further one’s education.
- Reimbursement alimony: When the dependent party has set aside their interests for the other, this alimony structure is meant to pay them back for the support they have offered. If one spouse worked while the other was in school, this support structure will reimburse them for the cost of supporting the spouse seeking higher education.
If you have questions about alimony or any other divorce matter in New Jersey, contact an experienced attorney at Townsend, Tomaio & Newmark today.