Somerset, NJ asked in Divorce and Family Law for New Jersey

Q: Can the arrears ex owes me - they are mostly for child support, be counted retroactive for 5 years of cohabitation?

I divorced in 2013 due to DV. Contract states 250/week child support, 500/month alimony.

At time of divorce - 11 year marriage/2 children - I was undocumented and had no education as we decided to stay in USA to get his career going and I left University in Canada where I was a permanent resident to become a SAHM and care for the family.

Post divorce I spent 2 years in homeless shelter awaiting my US green card and getting a quick certificate so I could work.

Ex got order for 23/week child support after not paying for years. Now he wants to eliminate his arrears because I married my 5 year cohabiting partner, but contract states that alimony should terminate at re-marriage or death not due to cohabitation.

I have never engaged him in court because I do not want his poison in my life, but this guy won't stop until I do something.

Please help! Thanks.

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1 Lawyer Answer
Bari Weinberger
Bari Weinberger
  • Parsippany, NJ
  • Licensed in New Jersey

A: Thank you for your question. I am sorry you are going through this situation. To answer your question, alimony arrears and child support arrears are treated differently. Child support arrears are only retroactive to the date of the order or filing of the complaint -depending how the judge entered the order. These arrears are not eliminated by virtue of remarriage. Alimony arrears accrue during the time that he was ordered to pay and didn’t. Your Marital Settlement Agreement or Judgment of divorce should indicate the term and address any cohabitation provisions. I highly recommend that you speak to a matrimonial attorney to ascertain your rights and bring all orders , judgment of divorce and Marital Settlement agreement to your appointment for review by the attorney. Good luck.

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