In a recent New Jersey appellate case, a couple who’d married in 1999 got a divorce. They had one daughter who would be 14 as of the end of 2017. Their divorce judgment incorporated a property settlement agreement that they’d negotiated with the help of attorneys. It addressed all of their issues.
They filed an appeal related to how certain terms were to be enforced. One term required the husband to pay the wife limited duration alimony in the amount of $21,000 each year for six years starting in 2012. Another term ended the alimony obligation if the wife cohabitated with another person under New Jersey law. Another term described the protocol for custody and decision-making related to health and emotional well-being. The parties were prohibited from doing things to alienate or color the child’s attitude toward the other parent. Instead, they were supposed to cooperate to make it easier for the child to adjust to the circumstances. The exes were also supposed to consult on major decisions related to education, welfare, safety, and health.
The father filed a motion to terminate alimony, claiming the mother was cohabiting with an unrelated man. He also tried to modify the parenting time arrangement from one in which the mother served as the parent of primary residence to a shared custody arrangement because he’d recently bought a house with a separate bedroom for his daughter.