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  • Allison Roberts

Palimony, Partition, and Pre-Nups: Modern Family Law

Updated: Nov 14, 2023

At a recent middle school play, I enjoyed a joke between the King and Queen as they discussed the happiness of their son: if their son, the Prince, was happy, then why should he get married? The 13-year-old delivering the line had no real comprehension of why the adults in the audience all laughed, but it got me thinking about the future of family law.

As the structure of our families and our society shift, what does this mean for the evolving financial obligations and rights between two non-married individuals?

I recently appeared in front of the NJ Supreme Court in Moynihan v. Lynch. The Supreme Court changed the law by allowing the enforcement of the written agreement between two unmarried individuals even without seeking the advice of an attorney (which was required until this decision ruled that requirement unconstitutional).

I have a new matter involving Partition, the equitable interest a party may have in a house when they live in it with a romantic partner, contribute to the expenses and upkeep, but are not named on the Deed or Mortgage.

And I have had no less than 3 inquiries for pre-nuptial agreements recently and in all the cases, it is the woman who is looking to secure her separate interest in the assets she is bringing to the second marriage. All of these tools and legal concepts are evolving and some are reemerging to help individuals in a “marital-like” relationship identify or define their financial rights and obligations. It is important to have these conversations and to seek the advice of a family law attorney so you are clear about what the law requires or provides. We are here to help with information and practical advice for your modern family. We can be reached via email at or by phone at 908-237-3098.

*Photo by Kelly Sikkema on Unsplash

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