Financial Considerations for Coronavirus-Era Divorces
The COVID-19 coronavirus pandemic continues to affect the daily lives of Americans and people across the globe. Unfortunately, the world does not simply stop when a pandemic arises. Familial and relationship issues progress, for better or worse. For people who were considering divorce or already in the process of a divorce when the shut-in orders and business closures began, there are important issues to consider and, likely, revisit, as a result of the economic effects of the pandemic. Continue reading for some issues to consider, or reconsider, if you are facing divorce during the coronavirus pandemic, and call an experienced New Jersey divorce attorney to discuss your family law issues.
Alimony and child support
Alimony and child support are determined by a variety of factors, including the income of each party. The coronavirus pandemic has led to significant upheaval to the United States economy, causing many businesses to suffer short-term and permanent losses, and forcing many to furlough or lay off workers. If your settlement negotiations or family court proceedings have already passed income evaluation for the purposes of alimony and child support, and you or your spouse have had a significant change in income as a result of the coronavirus, it is important to revisit those issues. You do not want to be left owing more child support and alimony than you can afford.
Home valuation and sale
Determining what to do with the family home is often one of the most contested issues in divorce. Do you sell the property and split the proceeds? Does one party keep the property, but the other retains an interest? Do you transfer the ownership, along with the mortgage and property taxes, to one party?
The real estate market has taken a hit along with the rest of the economy as prospective buyers are reluctant to move during this uncertain time, fearing both the economic uncertainties and their physical safety from contamination. Your home valuation may have changed significantly in the past few months. Additionally, if your income or the income of your spouse has changed, as discussed above, that may affect whether the party slated to take ownership of the home can still afford the mortgage and property taxes on their own. Discuss the matter with your attorney if the distribution of real estate should be revisited in light of the coronavirus.
Property division: Business valuation, stocks, retirement plans
The coronavirus pandemic has had a significant effect on the stock market, the value of small businesses, and investment-based retirement plans. Many divorces involve shared ownership of and interest in these types of assets. Equitable division of property depends on properly valuing these various assets, which can be tough at the best of times. Discuss your complex assets with your attorney, your accountant, and other members of your team to determine if property valuation should be revisited as a result of the coronavirus and its effects on the economy.
Help With Your New Jersey Divorce
If you are facing divorce or other family law issues in New Jersey, speak with a seasoned and professional and family law attorney at the Union offices of family law attorney John B. D’Alessandro. Call us today at 908-964-0102.