Civil Unions Legal Consequences

New Jersey Civil Union Rights & Responsibilities

What follows is a partial, non-exhaustive list of rights and obligations related to NJ Civil Unions:

Your Rights and Entitlements – NJ Civil Unions

  • Any surviving partner will not have to pay a New Jersey Inheritance or Estate Tax.
  • Either partner may be eligible for health insurance and other benefits through the other partner’s employment.
  • You may file Joint New Jersey Income Tax Returns with your partner.
  • You may each inherit from the other, even without a Will.
  • You will each be eligible for NJ Family Leave benefits and workers’ compensation benefits.
  • You will each be eligible to be named on Joint Insurance policies, such as auto and homeowner’s Insurance.
  • You will each be entitled to make medical decisions for the other, make funeral arrangements for each other, and bring claims for wrongful death and loss of consortium in personal injury cases involving each other.
  • Neither of you may be compelled to testify in any litigation in which your partner may be a defendant, absent certain limited circumstances; this is called the “spousal privilege.”
  • You will each be entitled to own real estate as tenants by the entirety; which gives you significantly more protection against creditors.

Your Obligations and Responsibilities – NJ Civil Unions

  • Either or both of you may be held responsible to contribute to each other’s support and reasonable medical care.
  • Either of you may be subject to paying alimony upon termination of the NJ Civil Union.
  • Both of you may be compelled to equitably distribution any property acquired during the relationship or commingled during the relationship at the conclusion of the NJ Civil Union.
  • Neither of you may disinherit your NJ Civil Union partner.
  • Either or both of you may be required to provide support for your NJ Civil Union partner’s children at the dissolution of the NJ Civil Union, even if you do not adopt them.
  • Either or both of you may be responsible for debts incurred by your partner at the termination of the NJ Civil Union.
  • Neither of you will be legally entitled under NJ Family Law to make unilateral decisions about your property (such as liquidating assets or selling real estate) if your NJ Civil Union partner does not consent.

Do you want solid, scrupulously researched legal advice during these often uncertain times? Romanowski Law Offices is a respected positive force among New Jersey Family Law Attorneys, committed to protecting and advancing the legal relationship rights of our LGBT (Lesbian, Gay, Bi-Sexual, and Transgender) community. We will leave no stone unturned when it comes to compassionately serving our LGBT NJ Family Law clients.

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