Edward R. Weinstein, Esq.

What is a Motion in a New Jersey Family Law Case?

At the Law Offices of Edward R. Weinstein, we understand that several issues arise during a New Jersey Family Court case wherein the parties cannot come to an agreement. When this occurs then the issues are then to be addressed by a Family Judge of the Superior Court of New Jersey. These issues involve, but are not limited to, New Jersey alimony, child custody and child support, just to name a few. In order to introduce these outstanding issues to the NJ Family Court, we file a motion on behalf of our client. Following is a typical way I explain motion practice to my clients:

“First, we must help you draft your Certification (or Affidavit) to the Court. This is the document where you, the client, are most involved. I call it the “guts” of the motion. In other words, this is your opportunity to explain your story to the Court. My office helps you draft this essential document, explaining the facts of your case while ensuring that the relevant law is commingled into the Certification. Obviously, we do this to persuade the Court that based upon the facts presented and the applicable law, we should prevail. This document is always thoroughly reviewed by you and is only submitted to the Court with your approval. The Certification requires your signature, swearing that everything contained in the Certification to be the truth. My office handles all other legal documents required to make a complete “motion package” and is then filed with the Court with a copy to the other party and/or their attorney.”

I also frequently advise our client’s that it is best to “strike first.” The reason for this is because we get to explain the situation first in the initial Certification and Motion. Then the other party gets a chance to respond (or also file a Cross Motion, if applicable). However, that is their only chance to address the motion in writing. However, we are allowed one more opportunity, in a Reply Certification, to argue our case further and show credibility problems with the papers filed by our adversary. Then all paper work is completed. Then, the matter will be scheduled for oral argument. In the alternative, the court has the right to decide the matter “on the papers.” Therefore, it is clear that you should always have an expert N.J. Family Law Firm handle your motion in order to be sure that all procedural technicalities have been handled correctly. You shall then feel secure and have the utmost confidence that a persuasive and effective argument has been made on your behalf.