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September 2014 Archives

Case Law Review for the Week of September 21, 2014

Maeker v. Ross, Supreme Court of New Jersey, September 25, 2014: This highly anticipated decision from the Supreme Court of New Jersey considered whether the amendment to the Statute of Frauds which required that palimony agreements be reduced to writing to be enforceable (i.e., oral palimony agreements are now unenforceable) as set forth in N.J.S.A. 25:1-5(h) was to be retroactively applied or was only to be prospectively applied. The Supreme Court of New Jersey determined that the revised statute would only be applied prospectively, meaning that oral palimony agreements which were entered into prior to January 18, 2010, the date the revised statute went into effect, can be enforced even if they have not thereafter been reduced to a writing.

The Impact of the New New Jersey Alimony Law

The issue of alimony reform in divorce has been a hot topic for the past few years, likely because the entire concept of alimony can be difficult for most people to comprehend. Finally, the law with regards to alimony in New Jersey has changed with the passing of an alimony reform bill.

Case Law Review for the Week of September 1, 2014

Krupinski v. Krupinski, Appellate Division, Published Decision, September 2, 2014: In this post-judgment appeal, the Appellate Court reversed the trial court's denial of the alimony payor's request for termination of alimony. In remanding the matter, the Appellate Division framed the issue for the trial court to address as follows: the court must discern what part of the $1,871 monthly pension benefits [payee] has been receiving since [payor's] retirement in 2010 is attributable to [payor's] post-dissolution efforts, and thus may be considered income to [payee] for purposes of determining alimony, outside the bar imposed in N.J.S.A. 2A:34-23(b).

Family Law and Divorce Case Law Review--August 2014

Guido v. Guido, Appellate Division (Unreported Decision), August 27, 2014: In this case, the Court was confronted with a challenge to the validity of an antenuptial agreement. The parties executed the antenuptial agreement nine days before their wedding. As the Court noted, "Prenuptial agreements are enforceable assuming full disclosure and absent unconscionability... Pursuant to N.J.S.A. 37:2-38, the party seeking to invalidate a premarital agreement must prove by clear and convincing evidence that '[t]he party executed the agreement involuntarily,' or that the agreement is unconscionable. Subsection (c) of the statute also provides that an agreement is unconscionable, if before the execution, the party (1) Was not provided full and fair disclosure of the earnings, property and financial obligations of the other party; (2) Did not voluntarily and expressly waive, in writing, any right to disclosure of the property or financial obligations of the other party beyond the disclosure provided; (3) Did not have, or reasonably could not have had, an adequate knowledge of the property or financial obligations of the other party; or (4) Did not consult with independent legal counsel and did not voluntarily and expressly waive, in writing, the opportunity to consult with independent legal counsel. d. The issue of unconscionability of a premarital or pre-civil union agreement shall be determined by the court as a matter of law. An agreement shall not be deemed unconscionable unless the circumstances set out in subsection c. of this section are applicable."

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