I Want to Retire Early. Can I Stop Paying My Alimony in New Jersey?
Although with our longer life spans these days, it may be less common for us to retire before our mid 60’s, it does happen.
But what if you have an alimony obligation to your ex? Must you continue paying alimony in New Jersey until “normal” retirement age—or even beyond that date?
Earlier this week, we answered the question of how a New Jersey Family Court will evaluate an application to terminate alimony at the “normal” retirement age. Under the New Jersey Alimony Reform Act of 2014 , that age is defined as the age when a person is eligible to receive full Social Security Retirement benefits. In all likelihood, that age will be 66 or 67.
The New Jersey Alimony Reform Act of 2014 also addresses how a New Jersey Family Court should evaluate an application to terminate alimony based on early retirement.
The person who wants to terminate his/her New Jersey alimony based on early retirement has the burden of demonstrating to the New Jersey Family Court Judge that his or her prospective or actual retirement is reasonable and made in good faith.
In order to determine whether that burden has been met, the New Jersey Family Court Judge must consider the following factors:
(a) The age and health of the parties at the time of the application;
(b) The obligor’s field of employment and the generally accepted age of retirement for those in that field;
(c) The age when the obligor becomes eligible for retirement at the obligor’s place of employment, including mandatory retirement dates or the dates upon which continued employment would no longer increase retirement benefits;
(d) The obligor’s motives in retiring, including any pressures to retire applied by the obligor’s employer or incentive plans offered by the obligor’s employer;
(e) The reasonable expectations of the parties regarding retirement during the marriage or civil union and at the time of the divorce or dissolution;
(f) The ability of the obligor to maintain support payments following retirement, including whether the obligor will continue to be employed part-time or work reduced hours;
(g) The obligee’s level of financial independence and the financial impact of the obligor’s retirement upon the obligee; and
(h) Any other relevant factors affecting the obligor’s decision to retire and the parties’ respective financial positions.
If you are looking to retire early and want to terminate your alimony obligation, you need to speak with an experienced New Jersey divorce attorney to discuss your rights and obligations.
Salvaggio Law Group LLC devotes its entire practice to New Jersey Divorce and Family Law matters, including New Jersey alimony issues.
If you want to talk, please call us at (973) 455-1220 or fill out the Contact Form on our website.