Divorce is both painful and personal. Unfortunately, it’s not always private - especially a concern if one of those involved has a higher profile. This is true of course for major celebrities and professional athletes, but it’s also something that concerns local politicians, news anchors, prominent business owners, board members or other officials.
If you anticipate a high-profile New Jersey divorce and you’d rather reserve the details for those who need to know them, it’s important to hire a divorce lawyer who not only practices discretion, but knows how to help you keep nitty-gritty from becoming public knowledge. An experienced divorce lawyer will best understand the sort of legal protections available under New Jersey law and how to leverage them to keep the intimate details of your divorce from being splashed on the front pages.
Some of the strategies we use:
- Keep it out of Court. If you want to control who has access to private information, the smartest thing you can do is try to avoid duking out the details in front of a judge. Some elements of the case will have to be made public because it is a public proceeding. That doesn’t mean information about your finances, your assets, your relationship with your kids or the conflict you and your ex endured needs to be part of the public record. A judge will ultimately need to approve the final dissolution, but the more you can resolve privately between the two of you (in an alternative dispute resolution forum like mediation) the fewer of those details will be made public. When you negotiate these matters out of Court, you avoid being compelled to provide sensitive records to anyone except your spouse’s lawyer. The information that ends up in the public record will be pretty dry.
- Request that certain documents be sealed. The Court has the authority to seal certain documents, such as financial or medical records or details about your parenting plan, that may contain sensitive information that you don’t want to be made public. Your divorce attorney can submit a request to the Court with the appropriate paperwork, asking that those records be sealed. Such requests aren’t always granted, but you want to trust that your attorney is making the best possible argument.
- Keep it off the internet. Posting about private matters like divorce on a public forum like Instagram or Facebook could impact any future arguments you might make about your desire to keep the details under wraps. Even if you have your pages set to private and even if you don’t consider yourself especially high-profile, never assume there won’t be leaks and conduct yourself accordingly. That means no trash-talking your ex, no getting into the details of the proceedings, etc. Limit your divorce discussions to in-person. Keep in mind that texts and emails can also come back to bite you.
- Opt for a no-fault divorce. New Jersey is a no-fault divorce state, meaning you don’t need a reason beyond irreconcilable differences to separate. Fault-based divorces do still exist and may be used for some strategic purposes, but if your goal is to draw as little attention to the case as possible, no-fault divorce is your best bet.
It’s a good idea if you’re considering divorce to consult with several different New Jersey divorce attorneys to determine which would be the best fit.
Call Rozin|Golinder Law, LLC today at (732) 810-0034 for a free and confidential consultation.