I just found out that my husband (we married 02/14/11) fathered a child who was born on 12/25/09. He withheld this information from me. Is this grounds for a divorce? The trust has been shattered. My husband is from Delaware and I am from New Jersey.
Not sure why that is important, but New Jersey is a No Fault divorce state. So, just file for divorce, if the issue matters to you. Find a family llaw attorney in Newark.
We do not have a client/attorney relationship until you make an appointment, we discuss your case face to face, I accept a retainer, and we explictly agree to enter into representation.
You can file based on irreconcilable differences. You do not have to prove fault.
All answers and information presented by HUNNELL LAW, LLC are intended to be used for educational or informational purposes only. The statements made about your case are intended to be general in nature and not intended to be an analysis of your case. Any results described or referred to herein may not necessarily occur for all cases as each case is fact specific. Thus, the statements made herein are not intended to provide legal advice or anticipate any specific outcome/consequence. Please consult with a licensed attorney in your area regarding your case. We invite you to contact us at http://www.hunnelllaw.com/ and welcome your calls, letters and electronic mail. However, contacting us does not create an attorney-client relationship. Please do not send any confidential information to us until such time as an attorney-client relationship has been established.
You may have more than one option here. First, you can certainly file for divorce under the grounds of either extreme cruelty or irreconcilable differences (so long as you have lived in NJ for at least one year just prior to your filing of a divorce complaint). Otherwise, you may have the right to file for an annulment instead (on the ground of fraud). This is actually a means by which you are considered never to have been married in the first place and your marriage is deemed void. My firm handles family law as its exclusive practice. Call us for a free consultation to discuss your options and which choice is best for you. 973-520-8822 - but in the meantime, check out the page I wrote on my website regarding annulments : the link is attached here...
The information provided is not, nor is it intended to be, legal advice. This information is designed for general information only. You should consult an attorney for advice regarding your specific situation. We invite you to contact us and welcome your calls, letters and emails. Contacting us does not create an attorney-client relationship. Please do not send any confidential information to us until such time as an attorney-client relationship has been established.
I hate to disagree with my esteemed colleagues, but ... don't waster your time seeking an annulment on these grounds. The court has addressed this specific issue and determined that "The Court is unwilling to hold that the failure to disclose the existence of out-of-wedlock children born prior to the marriage would, on its own and without more, be grounds for annulment. Such a rule would likely make a substantial number of marriages voidable. For example, a mother who secretly gave up a child for adoption or a father who concealed a child left behind in wartime in a foreign country would each find a subsequent marriage voidable through annulment if this were the rule." http://scholar.google.com/scholar_case?case=16254156479102412612
So, without more, you wouldn't be entitled to an annulment on these facts. You're obviously entitled to a divorce, however. If there are no other issues and it's going to proceed on an uncontested basis, in light of the fact that you have a marriage of just over a year's duration, I would suggest considering using a kit and just getting this done as quickly and cheaply as possible - http://www.njdivorcekit.com
IF YOU LIKE THIS ANSWER AND APPRECIATE THE TIME IT TOOK TO WRITE IT, PLEASE SELECT IT AS "BEST ANSWER." Thanks. The above is said without seeing your case file and without my understanding the entirety of the facts of your case. Depending on those facts, the above information be may incomplete or may be completely inaccurate. The above is intended as general information only based on what you described and not as legal advice. I advise you to consult with counsel who may be able to provide better information commensurate with a better understanding of your situation.
Sign up to receive a 10-part series of useful information and legal advice about the divorce process.
Years licensed, work experience, educationLegal community recognition
Peer endorsements, associations, awardsLegal thought leadership
Publications, speaking engagementsDiscipline