Regarding divorce, New Jersey law examines all significant factors, a list of issues, and the fairness of the situations.
Although a divorce signals the end of romantic interests, financial endeavors and pursuits that you explored as a couple are also being terminated, and losing your chief source of income will typically affect issues such as distribution of assets, child support, child custody, alimony, and other facets of your divorce.
State alimony laws are intricate, and the state revised them in 2014, which made adjusting alimony demands tedious and contingent on the type of alimony awarded, and the current circumstances of both parties.
A chief reason that an employed person who pays alimony, known as the obligor, will ask the court to revise his or her alimony commitment to his or her ex-spouse is the loss of a job or reduction in pay. It is worth noting that there are distinct guidelines for a self-employed obligor.
Factors of Concern
The state’s alimony statute offers a list of issues the court will consider in this instance, including:
- Causes for income loss
- The obligor’s efforts to become reemployed or to move toward another occupation if employment has been lost
- If a job has been lost, whether the obligor is making a sincere effort to find another job
- The income and conditions of the recipient, known as the obligee, and their attempts to get work
- Influence of health on each party’s ability to work
- Severance pay or benefits
- Other adjustments in the party’s financial circumstances since the divorce
- Motives for those changes, including either person’s improvement in financial standing
- The likelihood of a temporary adjustment in the alimony award during unemployment while the unemployed spouse seeks to find a job
- Everything else the court considers relevant to fairly and equitably settle a modification application
The Cause for the Job Loss Matters
A judge will consider both spouses’ financial issues when determining the financial ramifications in a divorce case. This includes the spouses’ income, assets, employability, and other dynamics. If either party has just lost his or her job, the judge will want information on what led to the job loss. Usually, a judge will be compassionate when the job loss was the result of extensive layoffs, or a person was not to blame for losing his or her job. On the opposite end of the spectrum, if a spouse has lost his or her job because he or she resigned or was fired for misbehavior, the judge tends to be less supportive.
The Impact of Unemployment on Your Divorce
If a spouse loses their job without any control on their end, it can have a crushing effect on a family’s financial standing and it can put a burden on family relationships. Unemployment or diminished salary can influence many facets of your divorce, including:
- Spousal support, spousal maintenance, or alimony
- Child support
- Child custody
- College tuition payments
- Division of property
Courts will craft settlements on a case-by-case basis to create a fair divorce settlement considering the change in income. Sometimes, the courts will award income to the unemployed party so that family members can sustain their lifestyle after the divorce. In other cases, courts will allow support expenses to reflect current revenue.
Cherry Hill Divorce Lawyers at Burnham Douglass Help Clients Going through a Divorce and Job Loss
Whether you need representation when your spouse is unemployed, or you need assistance as an unemployed spouse or have had your salary reduced, the experienced Cherry Hill divorce lawyers at Burnham Douglass understand the complexity of how the loss of job impacts a divorce. We will listen to the details of your case and develop a case that reflects your ongoing situation. Contact us online or call us at 856-751-5505 for a free consultation. We are located in Marlton and Northfield, New Jersey, and we serve clients throughout South Jersey, including Camden County, Burlington County, Atlantic County, Gloucester County, and Mercer County.