How To End A Civil Union in New Jersey

ending a civil union Almost a decade ago in October of 2006, the New Jersey Supreme Court ruled in the case Lewis v. Harris that banning same-sex couples from the rights and benefits of marriage violated the constitutional promise of equality. The Court gave the New Jersey Legislature a deadline of 180 days to correct the violation, which prompted the legislature to create the separate status of civil unions. Under New Jersey’s new law, a civil union was legally recognized union of two individuals of the same sex.

Today, of course, same-sex marriage is the law of the land in the US, but many couples are still in these civil unions . And, like any couple who experiences differences in their relationship and is choosing to end it, couples who are in civil unions need advice on how to dissolve their civil unions. Read more

Is Your NJ Palimony Agreement Legal?

Handshake(Updated 7/1/2015) If you and your partner put a palimony agreement in place before 2010, a new bill making its way through the New Jersey Legislature may have a serious impact on the legality of your agreement should it ever need to be enforced.

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Irreconcilable Differences Grounds for Dissolution of NJ Civil Unions, Court Rules

Judges wooden gavel in court

When same-sex couples entered into civil unions in New Jersey make the decision to end their relationships, they have the same rights as divorcing married couples to file for their dissolution on the “no-fault” grounds of irreconcilable differences, a New Jersey trial judge ruled in an opinion released this week. Read more

U.S. Supreme Court to Hear Same-Sex Marriage Case

US supreme court portico

In a move that is almost certain to be historic, the U.S. Supreme Court on Friday signaled that it is ready to take on the two-decade legal battle over same-sex marriage. The 12-justice panel agreed to hear cases from Michigan, Kentucky, Ohio and Tennessee, where state officials are defending laws that limit marriage to a man and a woman. The court will hear arguments in April; a decision is expected by the end of June.

The same-sex marriage debate is one that has ignited passion on both sides, and this latest development has led to many questions about what could change for couples across the nation, including how this could potentially affect gay and lesbian couples who married in New Jersey. To help clear up any potential confusion, here are some answers to questions we’re hearing people ask. Read more

Who Says it Was an Agreement? When Palimony Becomes A Case in NJ

sign here please

New Jersey family law attorneys and their “palimony” clients have been anxiously awaiting an important decision from the New Jersey Supreme Court in the appeal of Maeker v. Ross, 430 N.J. Super. 79 (App. Div. 2013). On September 25, 2014, the Court handed down its opinion, holding, in short, that parties to palimony agreements that have not been reduced to a signed writing can still go to court to enforce those agreements, provided they were made prior to January 18, 2010. Read more

Pennsylvania Follows New Jersey’s Lead In Legalizing Same Sex Marriage

Gay Couple Holding HandsDoes this sound familiar? Earlier this week, a federal judge in Pennsylvania struck down the state’s ban on same-sex marriage, paving the way for gay and lesbian couples to marry in-state, and for out-of-state same-sex marriages to finally be recognized. The ruling echoes a similar court decision made last October in New Jersey legalizing same-sex marriage. Read more

What Happens to Your Civil Union When You Marry?

With same-sex marriage now legal in New Jersey for a little over a week, questions have been popping up concerning some of the finer points of couples obtaining marriage licenses, especially those already in civil unions or domestic partnerships. Here are some common questions we’ve been hearing: Read more

NJ Same Sex Marriage Approved to Begin Monday

Update 2: On 10/21, the Christie administration withdrew its appeal of the court ruling allowing same sex marriage in New Jersey.

Update 1: To understand the legal road to gay marriage in New Jersey, read our new article, Status of Same-Sex Marriage in New Jersey.

Same sex marriages in New Jersey can begin this Monday, October 21, the state’s Supreme Court ruled today. Justices on the state’s highest court were unanimous in denying the Christie administration’s request to issue a stay of a lower court ruling allowing gay couples to marry. (The details of the initial ruling can be found here: Judge: Gay Couples in New Jersey Can Marry As Early As October 21). Read more

Judge: Gay Couples in New Jersey Can Marry As Early As October 21

Update 10/2/2013: New Jersey Gov. Chris Christie will seek to delay the October 21 date set for same-sex marriage to start and wants the state Supreme Court to fast-track an appeal in the case, according to a letter sent to the justices today by acting state Attorney General John Hoffman.

Same-sex marriage could be legal New Jersey as early as October 21, according to the historic ruling handed down Friday by Judge Mary Jacobson of State Superior Court in Mercer County. Read more

Sesame Street Actor Embroiled in Dispute Over Oral Palimony Agreement

Should Montclair resident Sharon Joiner-Orman receive palimony from her partner of 39 years, Sesame Street actor Roscoe Orman — even though the support agreement was never put in writing? Here’s the scoop on a controversial new ruling from a New Jersey Superior Court judge. Read more