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Family Lawyers for Unmarried Couples in Somerset County

Protecting the Rights of Unmarried Couples throughout New Jersey

A New Jersey couple cannot acquire marital rights and responsibilities by simply living together for a certain amount of time. For a couple to be legally married in New Jersey, they must obtain a valid marriage license and have a ceremony performed by an authorized person, institution, or organization to solemnize the marriage.

Unmarried partners are treated differently than married spouses in a number of significant ways. This can create various challenges, as the laws that apply to divorcing couples do not apply to unmarried couples when they separate. As a result, working out issues of support, child custody, and property division can be very complex.

At Shimalla, Wechsler, Lepp & D’Onofrio, LLP, our attorneys represent unmarried couples and parents in Somerset County and throughout New Jersey. We know how to best protect your rights and advocate for you in these situations, whether we’re preparing cohabitation agreements or assisting couples who are separating.

Reach out to us today to discuss your situation and see how Shimalla, Wechsler, Lepp & D’Onofrio, LLP can help. Call (908) 356-7634.

Palimony & Property Division for Unmarried Couples

Traditional divorce law does not apply to unmarried couples when they separate. For example, unmarried couples cannot seek financial support under the same legal framework that provides for a divorcing spouse to ask for alimony. Instead, an individual in a nonmarital relationship may request “palimony” from his or her long-time partner once the relationship between them comes to an end.

According to N.J.S.A. § 2A:34-23, some of the factors are used to determine cohabitation:

  • Joint bank accounts
  • Joint living expenses
  • Both contributing to household chores
  • Having frequent contact
  • Living in the same home

The law regarding palimony in New Jersey has changed through the years. Our legislature addressed the issue of palimony as recently as 2010, and the courts of this state currently continue to decide issues raised by unmarried couples.

Ordinarily, the principle of “equitable distribution” of property guides divorce cases. There is no specific set of factors to consider when dividing property between unmarried partners, however. Consequently, outcomes can be unpredictable, which is why knowledgeable and experienced attorneys are important to have on your side. Our family lawyers for unmarried couples in Somerset County can help you achieve your goals and protect your rights.

Call (908) 356-7634 or contact us online to schedule your initial consultation.

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