How Long is Too Long To Seek Alimony After a Divorce in NJ?
- December 25, 2012
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A woman who obtained a Final Judgment of Divorce by default in 1974 filed a motion seeking alimony and child support in 2011 after locating defendant in a Google search. The plaintiff claimed defendant left the country in 1993 and she was unable to locate him. The defendant countered that he was only absent from the country for a few months, never changed his name and always listed his number in the phone book. The Superior Court ordered alimony from the time of the divorce through plaintiff’s second marriage and child support from time of divorce until the children’s 18th birthdays setting the arearage amount at $144,950. Defendant filed a motion for reconsideration which was granted and the order was vacated due to plaintiff’s failure to assert her known right to seek financial support within a reasonable amount of time. Additionally, the plaintiff presented no evidence that she sought the defendant or financial support from him during the 37 years in between the divorce and her motion. Finally, the children are grown adults who had not seen plaintiff since 1974. In any legal matter, the doctrine of latches acts to prevent parties who have not made efforts to enforce their rights from unfairly prejudicing others by seeking relief much later when evidence is gone, great prejudice would result or other equitable reasons. If you believe you have a right to relief within the court, seek an experienced attorney immediately to insure you are not waiving your rights by failure to act. For more information on your legal rights in matrimonial, civil union, domestic partnership, child support, alimony, palimony or other family law matters in New Jersey visit HeatherDarlingLawyer.com.