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Avon-by-the-Sea is a Monmouth County borough that was named for the town of Avon in England. As of the 2010 census, there were 477 families in Avon-by-the-Sea. The average family size in the borough is 2.94 people. Family law matters can be contentious and challenging, even when a couple is reasonably amicable. In some cases, however, it is possible for the attorneys for both spouses to negotiate directly or through mediation so that a settlement agreement can be drafted to address all of the issues, including property distribution and child custody. However, in situations that are particularly heated, it may be necessary for an Avon-by-the-Sea family law lawyer to take one or more issues to trial. Pursuing a Divorce and Handling Related Issues Property division is one of the issues that is often contested in a New Jersey divorce. The manner in which property is awarded to a party in a divorce is known as “equitable distribution”. Keep in mind, “equitable” does NOT necessarily mean “equal”. In addressing equitable distribution, the property must first be characterized as either marital property or separate property. Each spouse can keep their own separate property, which includes any property owned by the spouse separately before the marriage, as well as gifts or inheritances received separately during the marriage. Marital property is property that has been earned or acquired during the marriage. Gifts that spouses give each other are marital property. The presumption is that any property acquired during the marriage is marital property, but the spouse seeking to characterize it as separate property can try to rebut this presumption. Property potentially subject to division can include real property, such as a marital home or vacation home, jewelry, art, cars, income, stocks, a family business, lottery winnings, furniture, and pension plans. In some cases, the increase in value of separate property is characterized as marital property rather than separate property. For example, if you treated a vacation home as rental property while married, and your spouse helped to manage this rental, the rent may be marital property. An Avon-by-the-Sea family law attorney can help you determine how property is likely to be characterized. Courts follow principles of equitable distribution when dividing the marital estate. This means that the division of the marital estate is fair (from the court's perspective), but not necessarily equal. The court will look at how both spouses contributed to the marriage and what would be needed after the divorce. Many spouses would rather work together with their attorneys to distribute the property evenly or some other agreeable manner, rather than have the court make such an important decision. In most cases, the court will accept a settlement agreement that specifies in detail which assets or property each spouse will get. Factors considered when dividing property include how long the marriage lasted, the spouses' ages and health, property brought into the marriage and used during the marriage, the marital standard of living, the financial condition of each spouse, income, earning capacity, tax consequences, each spouse's debts and liabilities, and child custody. Courts will also consider whether a spouse contributed to the other spouse's training or education, or whether one spouse worked for free in the other spouse's business. For example, sometimes a spouse pays for the other spouse to go to professional school and gives up their own career advancement or educational opportunities to do this. The court will take that into consideration when dividing property. It is rare for the court to consider spousal fault when dividing property. For example, the court will not consider whether your spouse cheated on you when deciding who should get the marital home. Municipal Court Representation We also handle matters in the Avon Municipal Court, which has authority over criminal matters of limited jurisdiction. These include non-indictable criminal offenses, such as assault or disorderly personal offenses, as well as motor vehicle offenses, ordinance violations, and Fish and Game violations. Indictable criminal charges are handled in Superior Court, but in some cases, matters start in Municipal Court and move to Superior Court. It is important to retain knowledgeable counsel early in these situations. Retain a Knowledgeable Family Law Lawyer in Avon-by-the-Sea At Goldstein Law Group, we provide experienced legal advice and representation to Avon-by-the-Sea residents regarding family law matters such as divorce, property distribution, child support, alimony, and child custody, as well as municipal court proceedings. You can contact us at 732-967-6777 or by completing our online form. 
Client Reviews
"It was truly a pleasure to work with Mr. Goldstein and his entire staff. He was extremely professional and followed up in a timely manner. I wouldn't hesitate to recommend him or work with him again in the future." Alison
"Great Job. Thanks for your help and expertise." Terry M.
"When you need a warrior to fight for your rights in family court, I highly recommend Mark Goldstein and his legal team. Two thumbs up! Thx Goldstein Law Group!" Mike