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Other Family Issues

In addition to financial and child-related issues, there are other aspects of the divorce practice and family law in general to consider:


Some people (often those with businesses or other assets of value, second marriages, etc.) want to enter into a premarital agreement before getting married; others do not wish to marry but want to live together and desire to enter into  an agreement that governs their rights and obligations to one another while they live together (cohabit) and in the event of a separation. It is critically important in either premarital agreements or cohabitation agreements that the parties allow sufficient time before the wedding or cohabitation commences to properly negotiate the terms of such agreements.  All of the attorneys in the firm have experience in negotiating and drafting such agreements.  Our attorneys also have experience in litigating the enforceability of such agreements.


All 50 states recognize marriage between same-sex couples. As a result, same-sex couples who marry have the same rights and obligations as heterosexual couples who marry, and the laws related to separation and divorce apply equally to all. At one time New Jersey had a Domestic Partnership Act for LGBT couples who were unable to marry and heterosexual couples of age 62 or over who live together (cohabit) who chose not to marry. NJ then adopted a Civil Union Act bringing the status of LGBT couples closer to that of married, heterosexual couples.  Although same-sex marriage (gay marriage) is now legally recognized in NJ, some Domestic Partnerships and Civil Unions remain valid. We represent members of the LGBTQ community seeking to divorce or dissolve Domestic Partnerships and Civil Unions in NJ either through mediation, Collaborative Law, negotiation, or litigation. We are prepared to draft agreements and assist individuals in Domestic Partnerships and Civil Unions to protect themselves and their rights regarding their children, support, the distribution of assets, allocation of debts, insurance, and other family law issues. For more information or a consultation, call our office.


At BorgerMatez, our attorneys represent both victims of domestic violence and defendants who have been accused of domestic violence under the New Jersey Prevention of Domestic Violence Act. This is a civil, not a criminal proceeding. Allegations of domestic violence must be proven by a preponderance of the evidence (more likely than not that the act occurred and that the victim is reasonably fearful for his or her safety), not by proof beyond all reasonable doubt (the standard of proof for criminal charges). The most common forms of domestic violence are assault, threats, and harassment. Abuse does not have to be physical, but can be any behavior that causes the victim to fear for his or her safety. Some examples include verbal threats to strike, kick or sexually assault the victim, sending harassing e-mails or text messages, excessive phone calls without a legitimate purpose, and many other actions. In New Jersey, victims must be at least 18 years old to file a domestic violence complaint. The courts do not distinguish between victims based on physical or psychological condition or by sexual orientation. The Prevention of Domestic Violence Act is not limited to protecting only married individuals but includes persons who are cohabiting and even only dating. A Temporary Restraining Order (TRO) may be entered by a hearing officer, Judge of the Superior Court or Judge of a Municipal Court upon the application of the alleged victim who must testify about what happened and that he/she is in fear of his/her safety and a restraining order is necessary to protect him/her. If a TRO is granted, the court will schedule a hearing within approximately 10 days and the defendant will be served with the TRO, advising him/her of the date for the final hearing. At the final hearing, the parties will have an opportunity to testify, bring witnesses and evidence, and the court will ultimately determine if the defendant committed an act of domestic violence, and, if so, if the victim requires the protection of a Final Restraining Order (FRO). In addition to entering an FRO, upon a finding of domestic violence, judges have the discretion to also grant other relief such as custody and parenting time, spousal support, child support, sole occupancy of a home, possession and use of vehicles and other assets, monetary damages, and more.


A Restraining Order does not necessarily guarantee a person’s safety from another but does provide if the defendant violates the order, he/she will be arrested and charged with a fourth degree crime. Domestic Violence Restraining Orders in New Jersey are permanent, i.e., they never expire. Upon a finding of domestic violence and the entry of an FRO, the defendant’s name is placed on a national Domestic Violence Registry which may impact his/her ability to obtain security clearances, work with or near children, adopt a child, enter the law enforcement field, and may have other consequences. If you are a victim of physical abuse or verbally threatened or harassed, you should call the police immediately. Once you are safe, contact an experienced attorney in our office at BorgerMatez to assist you. If you’ve been charged with committing an act of domestic violence and a TRO has been entered against you, call one of our experienced attorneys at BorgerMatez to represent you and protect your interests and your future.

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