Gebhardt & Kiefer Family Blog http://www.gklegal.com/blog/ recent posts en-us Thu, 23 Mar 2017 19:02:52 -0500 Premarital Agreements For People Over 50 http://www.gklegal.com/blog/premarital-agreements-for-people-over-50/ The rate of divorce for first marriages is approximately 40-50%[i]; that number jumps to an estimated 73% for second marriages[ii].  Now consider that the majority of New Jerseyans divorcing are over the age of 50[iii].  If you are over age 50 and considering a second (or third) marriage, how can you adequately protect yourself and your family?

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2017-03-13 00:00:00 http://www.gklegal.com/blog/premarital-agreements-for-people-over-50/
Employer Takeaways From First Official Affordable Care Act Repeal and Replacement Proposal http://www.gklegal.com/blog/employer-takeaways-from-first-official-affordable-care-act-repeal-and-replacement-proposal/ On March 6, 2017, House Republicans offered their first official proposal for an Affordable Care Act (ACA) roll-back.  While much remains to be seen regarding the proposed draft, employers should be mindful of the following as matters unfold:

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2017-03-10 00:00:00 http://www.gklegal.com/blog/employer-takeaways-from-first-official-affordable-care-act-repeal-and-replacement-proposal/
Can a Court Force You to Pay For Your Child’s College, Even If You and Your Former Spouse Agree Not to Do So? http://www.gklegal.com/blog/can-a-court-force-you-to-pay-for-your-child-s-college-even-if-you-and-your-former-spouse-agree-not-to-do-so/ Approximately 35 years ago, the New Jersey Supreme Court issued an often-cited opinion in which it held "the privilege of parenthood carries with it the duty to assure a necessary education for children." Newburgh v. Arrigo 88 N.J. 529 (1982). The Newburgh court established a series of factors for courts to consider when assessing whether to compel one or both parents to contribute to the costs of college and, in some cases, even graduate school. Generally speaking, these include the child's aptitude and educational interests, the parents' financial circumstances, and the relationship between the child and each parent.

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2017-03-03 00:00:00 http://www.gklegal.com/blog/can-a-court-force-you-to-pay-for-your-child-s-college-even-if-you-and-your-former-spouse-agree-not-to-do-so/
NJ Legislature Considers OPRA Amendment to Limit Access to Personal Information and Alter Fee-Shifting Provision http://www.gklegal.com/blog/nj-legislature-considers-opra-amendment-to-limit-access-to-personal-information-and-alter-fee-shifting-provision/ In February 2017, New Jersey Assembly Bill 4532 was introduced and subsequently voted out of the State and Local Government Committee.  The bill would amend the Open Public Records Act (OPRA) by exempting certain personal information from disclosure and narrowing the circumstances under which a successful litigant can be awarded attorney’s fees.

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2017-03-02 00:00:00 http://www.gklegal.com/blog/nj-legislature-considers-opra-amendment-to-limit-access-to-personal-information-and-alter-fee-shifting-provision/
Employers: Anti-Discrimination Policies Can Help You Defend Against Vicarious Liability Claims http://www.gklegal.com/blog/employers-anti-discrimination-policies-can-help-you-defend-against-vicarious-liability-claims/ New Jersey Courts have recently acknowledged that an employer is entitled to an affirmative defense to a hostile work environment claim based on the employer having exercised reasonable care to prevent and correct any harassing behavior. To obtain the protection of this defense, an employer must prove that it exercised reasonable care to prevent and to promptly address and correct the alleged behavior, and that the plaintiff employee failed to avail him or herself of preventive or corrective opportunities available, or to otherwise avoid harm. Courts look disfavorably toward claims where there is a policy prohibiting discrimination in the workplace, with instructions on how to report harassment, yet the plaintiff fails to report any such incidents to his/her supervisors, and instead pursues legal action. 

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2017-02-27 00:00:00 http://www.gklegal.com/blog/employers-anti-discrimination-policies-can-help-you-defend-against-vicarious-liability-claims/
Divorce, Tax Liability, and Innocent Spouse Relief http://www.gklegal.com/blog/divorce-tax-liability-and-innocent-spouse-relief/ Innocent Spouse Relief can be a strong defense for a spouse who discovers a tax liability during a divorce.  That is assuming the spouse qualifies as an “innocent spouse,” according to IRS guidelines.

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2017-02-23 00:00:00 http://www.gklegal.com/blog/divorce-tax-liability-and-innocent-spouse-relief/
Appellate Division Broadens Rice Notice Requirements http://www.gklegal.com/blog/appellate-division-broadens-rice-notice-requirements/ The Appellate Division recently broadened the circumstances under which a Rice Notice is required to be given to an employee. New Jersey requires public entities to provide employees with notice of a meeting at which their employment status may be discussed and adversely affected.  N.J.S.A. 10:4-12b(8); Rice v. Union Cty. Reg'l High Sch. Bd. of Educ., 155 N.J. Super. 64, 73 (App. Div. 1977).  Pursuant to N.J.S.A. 10:4-12b(8), an employee is given the opportunity to request that such discussion occur in public session.   The Appellate Division broadened this category of notice in the decision Kean Federation of Teachers v. Kean University, Docket No. A-5481-14T3 (Feb. 8, 2017).

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2017-02-22 00:00:00 http://www.gklegal.com/blog/appellate-division-broadens-rice-notice-requirements/
Domestic Violence as Portrayed in Popular Music http://www.gklegal.com/blog/domestic-violence-as-portrayed-in-popular-music/ As we approach Super Bowl Sunday, I am reminded of the claims that Super Bowl Sunday has the highest domestic violence incident rate of any day each year.[i]  Domestic violence has been a societal problem for many, many years, long before the Super Bowl was an event, and most likely since men and women began having relationships.  For many years, domestic violence was often hidden and it was rarely discussed.  Unfortunately, domestic violence continues to be present in many relationships.  However, it is now coming out of the shadows and is discussed openly as we try to eliminate it from our society.  One medium in which domestic violence is sometimes addressed is music.

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2017-01-31 00:00:00 http://www.gklegal.com/blog/domestic-violence-as-portrayed-in-popular-music/
NJ Legislature Re-Considers Requirement for Municipalities to Publish Legal Notices in Newspapers http://www.gklegal.com/blog/nj-legislature-re-considers-requirement-for-municipalities-to-publish-legal-notices-in-newspapers/ On December 12, 2016, the New Jersey Legislature revived a six-year-old proposal to allow municipalities and other government agencies to forgo advertising legal notices in newspapers and, instead, post such notices on websites. 

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2016-12-20 00:00:00 http://www.gklegal.com/blog/nj-legislature-re-considers-requirement-for-municipalities-to-publish-legal-notices-in-newspapers/
Supreme Court to Alleviate Confusion Over Whether Police Dash Cam Recordings are Subject to OPRA http://www.gklegal.com/blog/supreme-court-to-alleviate-confusion-over-whether-police-dashcam-recordings-are-subject-to-opra/ The Appellate Division currently has conflicting decisions on whether police dash cam videos are subject to OPRA (Open Public Records Act).  However, it is anticipated that this conflict will be resolved soon via a decision in the case of North Jersey Media Group v. Lundhurst.  

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2016-12-19 00:00:00 http://www.gklegal.com/blog/supreme-court-to-alleviate-confusion-over-whether-police-dashcam-recordings-are-subject-to-opra/
What Should I Expect from Family Law Mediation? http://www.gklegal.com/blog/what-should-i-expect-from-family-law-mediation/ Whether or not your family law case is involved in formal litigation, it is very likely that you will participate in some type of alternate dispute resolution, usually mediation.  Even the most acrimonious cases are required to participate in mediation through the Court’s programs relating to custody and financial issues[1].   As such, it is not uncommon to attempt mediation before filing a formal complaint for divorce and, in fact, it is sometimes preferable, as it allows the clients to maintain some control over their lives while not subject to the Court’s calendar and costly, unproductive appearances[2].   

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2016-12-02 00:00:00 http://www.gklegal.com/blog/what-should-i-expect-from-family-law-mediation/
NJ Supreme Court Clarifies “Plain View” Warrant Exception http://www.gklegal.com/blog/nj-supreme-court-clarifies-plain-view-warrant-exception/ 2016-11-21 00:00:00 http://www.gklegal.com/blog/nj-supreme-court-clarifies-plain-view-warrant-exception/ Recent Decision Provides Guidance on Final Restraining Orders in Domestic Violence Cases http://www.gklegal.com/blog/recent-decision-provides-guidance-on-final-restraining-orders-in-domestic-violence-cases/ In A.M.C. v. P.B., an appeals court considered an appeal by an estranged wife of a denial of her request for the issuance of a Final Restraining Order (FRO) and the dismissal of her Complaint under the New Jersey Prevention of Domestic Violence Act (PDVA).

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2016-10-27 13:09:42 http://www.gklegal.com/blog/recent-decision-provides-guidance-on-final-restraining-orders-in-domestic-violence-cases/
Dividing Retirement Accounts After a Divorce http://www.gklegal.com/blog/dividing-retirements-accounts-after-a-divorce/ Recently, I met several new clients who were each divorced more than twenty-five years, and whose divorce agreements called for the division of retirement accounts…divisions that never occurred.  No one followed up until they reached retirement age and realized their accounts had yet to be divided.  

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2016-10-11 00:00:00 http://www.gklegal.com/blog/dividing-retirements-accounts-after-a-divorce/
How is Job Loss Treated Under the Alimony Statute? http://www.gklegal.com/blog/how-is-job-loss-treated-under-the-alimony-statute/ Judge Jones of Ocean County recently interpreted amendments to the New Jersey alimony statute that were issued in 2014 regarding loss of employment/reduction to income.  This gives us new insight into how other courts may treat similar circumstances. 

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2016-09-15 00:00:00 http://www.gklegal.com/blog/how-is-job-loss-treated-under-the-alimony-statute/
Lyme Disease Is a Disability Entitled to Protection in the Workplace http://www.gklegal.com/blog/lyme-disease-is-a-disability-entitled-to-protection-in-the-workplace/ A recent Appellate Division case, Cook v. Gregory Press, Inc., determined that Lyme disease qualifies as a disability under the Law Against Discrimination (LAD). 

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2016-09-07 00:00:00 http://www.gklegal.com/blog/lyme-disease-is-a-disability-entitled-to-protection-in-the-workplace/
What Happens to Alimony When the Paying Spouse Retires? http://www.gklegal.com/blog/what-happens-to-alimony-when-the-paying-spouse-retires/ One of the fundamental tenets of New Jersey Family Law is that alimony payments are subject to modification based upon "changed circumstances." That alimony may change from time to time is provided for in our statute. The "changed circumstances" standard first arose and has since evolved over many years through our case law. Generally speaking, to be impactful, such changes are expected to be permanent, or at least long-term, and not within the direct control of the paying spouse. For example, a paying spouse who quits his job is highly unlikely to obtain any relief, while one who becomes disabled from working is almost certainly entitled to a modification of his obligation.

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2016-08-30 00:00:00 http://www.gklegal.com/blog/what-happens-to-alimony-when-the-paying-spouse-retires/
Child Support Arrears & Taxes May Impact Your Passport http://www.gklegal.com/blog/child-support-arrears-taxes-may-impact-your-passport/ If you are a U.S. citizen, do you think that your right to travel abroad is a given?  Many parents or former spouses who are obligated to pay child support are often surprised to learn that child support arrears may affect their ability to obtain a passport or travel.  And many people with a tax delinquency are also surprised to learn of possible travel restrictions.

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2016-08-29 00:00:00 http://www.gklegal.com/blog/child-support-arrears-taxes-may-impact-your-passport/
Seven Things You Should Know About Prenuptial Agreements http://www.gklegal.com/blog/seven-things-you-should-know-about-prenuptial-agreements/ If you are engaged and considering a prenuptial agreement, here are seven things you should keep in mind:

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2016-08-01 00:00:00 http://www.gklegal.com/blog/seven-things-you-should-know-about-prenuptial-agreements/
Appellate Division Says COAH Rules and Regulations Do Not Support a “Gap” Period Affordable Housing Obligation http://www.gklegal.com/blog/appellate-division-says-coah-rules-and-regulations-do-not-support-a-gap-period-affordable-housing-obligation/ The battle over New Jersey municipal affordable housing obligations continues, with municipalities on one side and Fair Share Housing Center (“FSHC”), the New Jersey Builder’s Association (“NJBA”) and a plethora of developers on the other.

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2016-07-19 12:04:37 http://www.gklegal.com/blog/appellate-division-says-coah-rules-and-regulations-do-not-support-a-gap-period-affordable-housing-obligation/
Common Myths Regarding Divorce Cases http://www.gklegal.com/blog/common-myths-regarding-divorce-cases/ Myth #1:  My Lawyer Cannot Properly Represent Me If He/She is Friendly with the Other Lawyer

Many of the attorneys who focus their practice on family law in New Jersey are likely to know each other.  Especially when attorneys practice primarily in counties close to their own offices, they get to know many of the other local attorneys by having cases with them, seeing them in court, and seeing them at Bar Association events and seminars. 

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2016-07-13 13:15:04 http://www.gklegal.com/blog/common-myths-regarding-divorce-cases/
Avoiding Common Mistakes in Your Employee Handbook http://www.gklegal.com/blog/avoiding-common-mistakes-in-your-employee-handbook/ A poorly written, outdated, or inconsistent employee manual can hurt your company and lead to potential litigation down the line.  The most common mistakes to avoid are the following:

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2016-07-07 00:00:00 http://www.gklegal.com/blog/avoiding-common-mistakes-in-your-employee-handbook/
NJ Supreme Court Expands Definition of Marital Status Under the LAD http://www.gklegal.com/blog/nj-supreme-court-expands-definition-of-marital-status-under-the-lad/ The New Jersey Supreme Court recently issued an important interpretation of New Jersey’s “Law Against Discrimination” (LAD), of which all New Jersey employers should be aware. 

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2016-06-29 00:00:00 http://www.gklegal.com/blog/nj-supreme-court-expands-definition-of-marital-status-under-the-lad/
“What I Wish I Knew Before I Began the Divorce Process …” http://www.gklegal.com/blog/what-i-wish-i-knew-before-i-began-the-divorce-process/ Throughout life, we often reflect on past events with much greater clarity than when we are “in the moment.”  Divorce is no exception.  People who have been through a divorce will often say “I wish I would have known…”

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2016-06-20 00:00:00 http://www.gklegal.com/blog/what-i-wish-i-knew-before-i-began-the-divorce-process/
How Do the New DOL Overtime Rules Affect My Business? http://www.gklegal.com/blog/how-do-the-new-dol-overtime-rules-affect-my-business/ On May 18, 2016, the U.S. Department of Labor (DOL) announced a final rule regarding overtime wage payment qualifications for the “white collar exemptions” under the Fair Labor Standards Act (FLSA). Covered employers must comply with this rule by December 1, 2016.

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2016-06-01 00:00:00 http://www.gklegal.com/blog/how-do-the-new-dol-overtime-rules-affect-my-business/