Skip to main content
Gary L. Borger

Gary Borger’s Answers

12 total


  • What is proposed final judgement of divorce mean?

    Hi there I have a proposed final judgement of divorce but it was not signed by any judge is it legal?

    Gary’s Answer

    It is merely a judgment drafted (worded) by an attorney to be presented to the judge to sign (if the other attorney agrees with how it is worded and the judge finds it acceptable). It is not a legal document until it is signed by the judge.

    See question 
  • My husband has filed for divorce and i'm taken a little offguard i've never hired a lawyer before and i'm a little panicked.

    I called a law firm and they said there was a conflict of interest. which brought my confidence down. I dont know anything about lawyers or the system. I just need help!

    Gary’s Answer

    Being panicked when you find out that your spouse is seeking a divorce is a natural and appropriate emotional response.. That is why it is important to meet with a knowledgeable, experienced and emotionally supportive attorney (while also considering meeting with a psychologist or family therapist to work on the emotional aspects of divorce, something too few people going through divorce do). An experienced attorney who concentrates his or her practice in family law will take away much of the panic by explaining the process ahead of you and your rights and the likely limits of the outcome (in terms of parenting your children, support and division of your property). I notice a big change in the people who meet with me for a divorce consultation from when they walk out the door compared to how they were when they walked in (much less anxious and panicked). Talk to friends, relatives, co-workers, etc., who are divorced or who are getting divorced for recommendations on a local divorce/family lawyer. Also check on line to read about local family law attorneys. Lastly, consider having consultations with more than one family law attorney to see the different personalities, styles, and approaches, and to compare the opinion each gives you on where you stand legally (that is, the range of support, division of marital assets and debt, and what type of parenting plan is likely in your case). You should ask when you call for an appointment what percentage of the attorney's practice is focused on family law and divorce, how long the attorney has practiced family law, and what range of retainers (money paid in advance as a deposit for fees to be incurred) the attorney charges and the hourly rates as most attorneys charge on an hourly basis payable from the retainer that must be paid up front to commence the attorney-client relationship (to see if if is what you can afford). You also are required under NJ law to be told of the various options for dispute resolution such as mediation and collaborative divorce instead of just filing for divorce (litigation) and having your attorney negotiate for you. There also are some attorneys who charge a greatly reduced initial consultation fee for what is called "a process interview" where the attorney will not discuss the particulars of your case but will inform you of what optional approaches are available to settle your case short of trial (understanding that less than 5% of the divorce cases filed get tried).

    See question 
  • Can u get a court appointed lawyer in nJ if you cant afford a divorce lawyer??? The wife has a lawyer

    The soon to be ex wife is trying to get everything!!!!!!!!!

    Gary’s Answer

    No; NJ does not consider a divorce the type of legal proceeding that constitutionally requires appointment of a lawyer as would be the case with a criminal proceeding that could result in loss of freedom (incarceration).

    See question 
  • Prenup and a Police Pension.

    Can you have a prenup that will protect me in case of a divorce? With 50% of all marriages ending in divorce I figured I may look out for myself. I heard that pensions are considered "future earnings" and they hard very hard to protect from a spo...

    Gary’s Answer

    A pre-nuptial (also called a pre-marital agreement) can include a waiver of the right to share in pension benefits of the other party. Such an agreement should be drawn up by an experienced family law attorney licensed in NJ well before the marriage date to give the other party time to have it reviewed with independently chosen legal counsel. If the pension is not yet in pay status (i.e., you are not yet retired), it can be excluded in a pre-marital agreement from sharing (division) at the time of divorce, should that occur; if it already is in pay status (i.e., you are retired already), it will have to be dealt with differently but still can be addressed in a pre-marital agreement. By the way, ERISA does not govern public sector pensions, only private sector retirement plans.

    See question 
  • Can i get back money i lent to my husband?

    I've been separated (not legaly) from my husband for over 18 months. I haven't even seen him for all this time. During this period i lent him $6000 to pay his child support arrears ( he was about to go to jail ). I don't really have any proof beca...

    Gary’s Answer

    You can seek repayment of the loan in your divorce proceedings. While a transfer of funds between relatives in NJ is presumed to be a gift, since he acknowledged in text messages that it was a loan, you can use those text messages (if you saved them) to overcome the gift presumption.

    See question 
  • Divorce

    My wife lives in Pa. I live in N.J. Married in N.Y.C. Where do I file for divorce?

    Gary’s Answer

    You can file for divorce in NJ after you have lived here for 12 months. (The one exception is if the basis for divorce is adultery, there is no waiting period.) However, unless your wife lived in NJ, works here, owns property here, or has some other connection with NJ other than you living here, all a judge can do in NJ is divorce you, i.e., the judge cannot distribute property or debt, or award alimony. If there are children of the marriage, there are other rules that determine whether the judge can rule on custody, parenting time, or child support.

    You also can file in PA where your wife lives but in doing so you are submitting yourself to the jurisdiction of the courts of PA on all issues. I would speak with both a PA and a NJ attorney. If you wish to call me, I can give you the name of a local attorney near Sparta (which is two hours north of my office, making it costly for me to represent you) and an attorney in PA if you'll tell me in which county your wife resides.

    The fact that you were married in NYC has no bearing on where you can file for divorce.

    See question 
  • Child Support and/or Health Insurance Coverage

    I'm a non-resident dad who was never married to the mother of my child. I make regular court-ordered child support payments. My daughter's mother - as a teacher - has comprehensive health insurance coverage for both herself and my daughter for whi...

    Gary’s Answer

    Since your child's mother has health insurance for your daughter through her employment (and at no cost to her as a teacher), a judge would not make you pay for secondary health coverage for the child. Unless health insurance coverage for your daughter costs her mother money (from her paycheck, for example, and you said it doesn't), you do not have to pay anything to the mother of the child because her employer is providing health insurance for your daughter.

    See question 
  • Are there regulations for limiting overnight visitation when a child is two and under?

    I am about to give an ex boyfriend visitation of our daughter but she is young and I have limited time with her - I was wondering if I could insist on only one weekend night overnight stay?

    Gary’s Answer

    There are no specific guidelines in NJ by statute, case law or regulations that define when a parent can have a child stay overnight nor for how many consecutive or frequent overnights. It is up to the judge who is assigned the case, and different judges have different predispositions for overnights with young children. The first thing to do is start slowly and see if your daughter's father will agree to only one weekend overnight per week or every other week. He may agree. If he doesn't he will have to file a motion seeking more time with her than you will allow. Unless you have an expert (child psychologist) examine the child and write a report on what would be harmful emotionally to the child, the decision will be based solely on how the judge feels about it. In the end, it is left to the judge's discretion based on your factual statement (called a certification, which is like an affidavit, just not signed in front of a notary) and that of the father (and any other people who have relevant knowledge of him as a father).

    See question 
  • Child lives with me,sees father alternate weekends ,I would like to move to PA,about an hour and 15 moms away,will I be allowed

    father sees our son three weekends a month, I dont see any reason why that cant continue,,I lost my job here and am planning on getting married, my fiance lives in PA, talked to my ex about it and he says I cant not move out of state, how do I sta...

    Gary’s Answer

    NJ has a law that affects parents of children born in NJ or who have lived here for five years. That law requires that parent seeking to relocate a child to live out of state to obtain the other parent's consent or to obtain a court order allowing the relocation of the child. (There is a third exception, the child's consent, but I have never seen a judge rule based on that.) You need to have a good faith, legitimate reason for moving (i.e., not just to take the child farther away from the other parent) and you need to be willing to modify the parenting time of the other parent to compensate him for not being able to spend as much time with the child. There is always an associated risk where the father is actively involved in the child's life on a frequent basis that the father will object and will seek primary residential custody of the child. You definitely need to speak with an attorney about your chances and the cost of proceeding with filing a motion for relocation of your son with you to PA.

    See question 
  • What is the emancipation process & when paying for college do the same guidelines apply as in child support for how much I am to

    pay? Are the incomes of BOTH parents considered & what if the child lives at college. Can scholarships, financial aide, and grants also determine my costs?

    Gary’s Answer

    In NJ, emancipation occurs when the child has completed his/her formal education, so long as that is on a full-time basis (although some gaps in education like a semester off have not resulted in permanent emancipation), or has married, entered the military, or working full time. If the parents agree that the child is emancipated, it is a good idea to enter into a Consent Order to be submitted to a judge to sign and file declaring the child emancipated; if one parent feels the child should be emancipated but the other parent doesn't agree, you need to file a motion for an order declaring the child emancipated, supported by a factual certification stating what the child is doing that makes him or her emancipated at this point in time.

    The incomes, assets, and reasonable debts of both parents and the child, among many other factors, are considered when a court rules on an application in NJ to fix each parent's (and the child's) share of his or her tuition, room and board (or rent and utilities and groceries, if the child lives off campus), fees and books. The court definitely will consider all available financial aid to reduce the "gross" college expenses to "net" expenses.

    Child support payable for the college student who is living away on campus is NOT determined under the Child Support Guidelines like it is for the child while in grade school, middle or junior high, and high school. Rather, there are statutory factors the the judge applies to determine what the child's reasonable needs are, consistent with the parents' financial standing (income, assets, etc.) so that children of wealthier parents get more support than children whose parents' incomes and assets are less, just like would be the case if the parents hadn't gotten divorced, and how much each parent should pay and how much the child should bear toward his/her support needs from income he or she could earn during the summer, winter, and spring school recesses and even working part time during the school year, if appropriate.

    See question