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Are divorce decrees final?

On Behalf of | Jun 1, 2021 | Property Division

When a couple decides to end their marriage, they are issued a divorce decree by the court. The decree is a legal document confirming the divorce and can be used as evidence when the former couple has to divide property or assets. If you live in New Jersey and are going through divorce, here are some important things to know about the decree.

Are divorce decrees permanent?

Divorce decrees can affect life changes that take place after a couple is no longer married. If a person has a divorce decree along with a last will and testament or irrevocable trust, the decree will likely take precedence in court. For instance, if a parent leaves property or money to their children before remarrying and these details are included in the decree, the children are entitled to the property. However, if the parent’s new spouse is listed on the last will and testament, the courts will have to determine who is entitled to live in the home based on income or need.

Taking the matter to court

It is important to know the details of a divorce decree if you are a former spouse or dependent. This will let you know what to expect if one parent or former spouse passes away or becomes incapacitated. In many cases, dependents and former spouses are entitled to a parent’s assets; if one parent remarries, the new spouse may be entitled to some benefits and assets as dictated in a last will and testament.

Speaking to a family law attorney may help you better understand the importance of your divorce decree and the legal significance of this document. An attorney may also answer other questions you have about the divorce process.