Equitable Distribution

Home Purchased in Contemplation of Marriage is Subject to Equitable Distribution Divorce

In the family law, equitable distribution divorce case of Zamorsky v Zamorsky, 20-2-4869, App. Div. the plaintiff appeals from the provisions of a final dual judgment of divorce, contending that the court erred in including the former marital home as a marital asset subject to equitable distribution, the distribution percentage of the home’s value awarded to defendant, and the award of counsel fees to defendant. The panel affirms, finding that: the judge’s decision that the home was subject to equitable distribution as an asset purchased in contemplation of marriage was supported by sufficient credible evidence in the record; plaintiff, whose testimony the judge found lacking in credibility, failed to meet his burden of showing that the home was not subject to distribution; the judge’s determination that neither party rebutted the presumption that both plaintiff and defendant contributed equally to the value of the property during the marriage is amply supported by the evidence; and the properly performed an evaluation of all statutory factors and then equitably awarded plaintiff his down payment and after deducting the amount owed on the mortgage, reasonably awarded half the remaining value of the home to each party. The panel also finds no abuse of discretion in the award of attorney fees.

Reference: Case & Analysis, New Jersey Law Journal, 217 N.J.L.J., 257 (July 21, 2014)

Filed Under: Family Law; Equitable Distribution

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