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How does alimony work in New Jersey?

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Quick Answer

New Jersey law allows for several types of alimony pursuant to a divorce, including limited duration alimony, open durational alimony, rehabilitative alimony and reimbursement alimony, according to Andrew R. Fischer. The objective is to provide financial support and maintenance to the recipient spouse.

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Full Answer

New Jersey courts may award some or all forms of alimony to the recipient spouse depending on the specific facts surrounding the divorce action, notes Andrew R. Fischer. How alimony is awarded depends on whether the case is negotiated or litigated. If the case is negotiated, the parties have ample leeway to reach an agreement regarding the amount and duration of the alimony award. If the case is litigated, a judge determines the award and is guided by the law, and he has little room to construct an alimony award.

The amount of the award under any given form of alimony depends on a variety of factors, such as the needs of the recipient spouse and the ability of the other spouse to pay; the length of the marriage; age, physical and emotional state of each spouse; and each spouse’s income, education, employment situation and earning capability, explains Nolo. Even after an alimony award is made, it can be modified or terminated due to changing circumstances, such as inability of the spouse to find a job or failure to appropriately rehabilitate.

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