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Will COVID-19 Lockdowns Result in More New Jersey Men and Fathers Filing for Divorce?

Will COVID-19 Lockdowns Result in More New Jersey Men and Fathers Filing for Divorce?

I get it. It’s not pleasant to be trapped in a failing or bad marriage. But it must be a living hell to be stuck at home in a disintegrating relationship while the stay-at-home orders remain in effect in New Jersey.

A client who had begun his divorce process prior to the onset of the pandemic was meeting with me in our Virtual Law Office when he said almost as an aside, “I bet you’re swamped with calls from other men and fathers in New Jersey who are stuck in their home with a narcissistic wife like mine and just want out!”

I told him that while we are getting more inquiries than usual, it’s really much too soon to know whether the COVID-19 lockdown will lead to a spike in New Jersey divorces.

But what is happening in China now that it has relaxed its lockdown orders may offer a clue as to what could well happen here in New Jersey once Governor Phil Murphy begins to ease the restrictions in his emergency order.

Will New Jersey Divorce Filings Follow the Trend?

Although New Jersey is a long way from China, BusinessWeek magazine is reporting that divorce filings skyrocketed there as restrictions were eased.

Somebody mentioned in the article cited a familiar litany of complaints that led to filing for divorce from their spouse: Not enough money, too much screen time, and deciding to play with their two children when it was time for the kids to go to bed.

“I can’t endure it anymore,” the person is quoted as saying. “We’ve agreed to get a divorce and the next thing is to find lawyers.”

No official statistics are yet available, but media reports from a number of cities throughout China indicate a major uptick in uncoupling. The trend is an ominous warning for men and fathers in New Jersey. As BusinessWeek put it, if absence makes the heart grow fonder, the opposite may be true when people spend too much time together in close quarters.

“The more time they spent together, the more they hate each other,” observes Shanghai lawyer Steve Li in the piece.

The family law attorneys for men and fathers at the Micklin Law Group expect to see a similar pattern emerge over the next few months.

Filing for Divorce in New Jersey is Still Possible

Family courts throughout the state continue to accept electronic divorce filings, and judges continue to hold virtual emergency hearings when spousal or child abuse is alleged, or if a man or father needs to reduce his alimony or child support payments because he lost his job.

And for couples that can agree between them on all of the open issues in every divorce – dividing assets and debt, financial support, child custody, and visitation –utilizing our new and unique E-Divorce process means they may still obtain a divorce during the lockdown without having to go to court.

As the divorce attorneys for men and fathers in New Jersey, all of the lawyers and support staff at The Micklin Law Group continue to work remotely and can help you if want to discuss getting a divorce even now during the lockdown.

We remain in contact with each other and the court and also have access to client files thanks to our electronic infrastructure.

If you are a separated or divorced father in New Jersey and wonder if you should launch divorce proceedings now, we can meet with you in our Virtual Law Office, or we can discuss your situation by phone at either 973.562.0100 in Nutley or, in Montclair, at 862.245.4620.

To schedule an appointment, please request a day/time here.

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