Mediation: An Interview with Gale B. Weinberg, Esq.

The firm of Weinberg & Cooper, LLC can help you resolve your family law issues through mediation. Gale B. Weinberg, Esq. has been a trained mediator since 1996. Her decades spent as a lawyer have given her a firm legal foundation. She has in-depth knowledge of the law and knows how courts are likely to rule on various family law issues. Her goal as a mediator is to help clients find the best solution for their family. I recently had the opportunity to sit down with Ms. Weinberg and discuss mediation and divorce.

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Alimony And Retirement

It is not unusual when faced with the reality of having to pay alimony to a former spouse, that one of your first questions will be "when does this alimony obligation end?" If the alimony obligation is a "permanent alimony" arrangement or an "open durational alimony," arrangement, will you have to pay forever? Unless the alimony is for a defined term of years, this is a question that is difficult, if not impossible, for a practitioner to answer for a client.

Prior to 2014, if a party was in a long term marriage, the alimony obligation was likely to have been "permanent." The alimony statute, N.J.S.A. 2A:34-23, ( was amended in September 2014 and omitted permanent alimony, deferring to the newly created open durational alimony, and refining and clarifying how retirement of an obligor will impact the payment of alimony. This timing distinction becomes important because the existing Agreement or Order regarding alimony will be assessed based upon a different standard.

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Alimony: Be Careful What You Agree To

In New Jersey, alimony can be modified based upon changed circumstances. One of many changes in circumstances that can occur post-divorce is the recipient's residence with another individual with whom they are engaged in a romantic relationship- commonly referred to as "cohabitation." It is commonly understood that alimony can be modified, suspended or terminated in the event of the recipient's cohabitation. This is a common provision in most divorce agreements and as a practice tip, attorneys usually try to mirror the current state of the law in the language we incorporate into a divorce agreement. As the Court stated in Konzelman v. Konzelman, 158 N.J. 185 (1999) ( consensual agreements that provide for a termination of alimony in the event of a cohabitation are enforceable.

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Baures Gets Relocated: Removal Gets An Update

It is always a difficult scenario. Parents get divorced and a custody schedule is entered, for a parent to later be transferred to a different location. Or, a separation occurs, and one parent wants to move to where they have more family support. Post-divorce, people move on to new jobs, new romantic relationships, and new lives.

What happens to the children when a relocation to a new state must occur in order for a parent to move on with their lives? What happens to the children, and to the non-relocating parent?

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The Role of a Guardian ad Litem

I recently had an opportunity to sit down with and interview Melissa E. Cohen, Esq., a family law attorney at Weinberg & Cooper, LLC ( in Hackensack, New Jersey. Ms. Cohen is routinely appointed by Bergen County Family Court Judges to serves as a Guardian ad Litem. We met to discuss this interesting role and her critical involvement with children within the New Jersey Court system.

Q: What is a Guardian ad Litem?

A: A Guardian ad Litem, also referred to as a GAL, is an attorney who is appointed in the discretion of the judge assigned to an individual case where custody and/or parenting time is at issue. These are private attorneys, typically who practice in the jurisdiction where the matter is pending and whose work is known to the judge. The authority for the appointment of a Guardian ad Litem is found in New Jersey Court Rule 5:8B (See

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Sexual Assault Survivor Protection Act of 2015 – What You Need to Know

What do you do when sexually assaulted by an acquaintance that you may have the possibility of seeing again? Imagine a scenario where you are sexually assaulted by a work colleague or the victim of a date rape. Other than filing criminal charges, is there any recourse to protect you?

Many people are familiar with the NJ Prevention of Domestic Violence Act (NJSA 2C:25-17 et seq.) ("PDVA") which is the law governing restraining orders in New Jersey. The PDVA was passed to protect victims of regular, repeated abuse at the hands of a spouse, significant other, or cohabitant. However, there needs to be that specific relationship to be eligible for protection. At the current time, there are currently 18 causes of action for a restraining order, including harassment, assault, terroristic threats, and the like. Sexual assault is one cause of action that can warrant a restraining order.

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New Jersey Legislative Changes in Child Support

Effective February 1, 2017, the child support laws, as we know it, will be changed. The most notable change is that child support terminates, by operation of law without an order of the court, if a child, less than 19 years old: a) marries; b) dies; or c) enters the military service. At age 19 years of age, child support terminates by operation of law without a court order unless: a) another termination date is set forth in a court order; b) the parents of the child agree and the court approves the continuation of support until a predetermined date; or c) the child support is extended by the court based upon an application by a parent who filed prior to the child’s 19th birthday. If your divorce judgment or support order indicates an end date other than the child’s 19th birthday (e.g., 18 years old), that date will remain; you cannot request an administrative continuation of support. The new law does not apply to foreign judgments/order registered in New Jersey for modification or enforcement under UIFSA.

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My Ex-wife May Be Living With Someone. What Is the Current Status of New Jersey Law?

If you are in the process of divorcing, what issues should you incorporate into your divorce agreement about alimony in the future? How do you balance the need for support versus moving on in life? Read on to see the current state of the law on cohabitation and its effect on the continued payment of alimony.

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When The Wedding Is Called Off: Who Gets The Ring?

By: Ashley Tate Cooper, Esq. posted on May 5, 2016

As a family lawyer, I have been asked this question more than once, and not only from potential clients, or former clients, but also from dear friends of mine. Not every pair of love birds make it down the aisle to say their "I do’s." Sometimes, a wedding is called off by one party to the shock and dismay of the other. Sometimes, it is a joint decision painstakingly made together. In any event, it is hoped that the decision to pull the plug on the wedding is made well before the final deposits were paid or the invitations were sealed and placed in the mail. However, sometimes cold feet occurs at the very last minute and a wedding is even called off only days (and in some situations, only hours) before the ceremony. After the tears are shed, words are exchanged, and the numerous telephone calls are made to inform the officiant, the vendors and the guests that the wedding will not be proceeding as planned, the inevitable question is asked: WHO GETS THE ENGAGEMENT RING?

Tax Preparation for Divorced or Divorcing Individuals

It is that time of the year: compiling all of your tax information to ensure you get the most benefit from your available deductions and exemptions. Here is a quick list of items to help you in gathering the information you need and some sound suggestions:

  1. Make sure that you have all of your W-2s, 1099s and K-1 forms that reflect your taxable income for the year. 1099s reflect a variety of income, including earnings, interest, dividends, capital gains and short-term gains from investment s, and distributions from retirement accounts. Your employer and financial institutions should provide copies of this information.