While the laws specific to the issues in family law cases are very complicated, the general concepts can be summed up on one hand.

Thumb

All matrimonial cases must start with the filing of a Complaint. The Complaint starts the process, and just like your thumb, the Complaint controls the issues that a Court will address in your case.

Pointer

The first finger on your hand represents Custody. It is the first and most important concern in your case, and just like when you hold up your first finger, the number 1 concern is the best interests of your children.

Middle

Your middle finger represents alimony and child support. Once you have determined what is best for your children, your next concern will be establishing the kind of life can you afford to provide for you and your children after your divorce.

Ring

If you hold up your ring finger, you should immediately notice a wedding ring, or the conspicuous absence of one. Your wedding ring is the symbol of your marriage, and in this case, also represents all of the assets and debts you acquired throughout your marriage. In New Jersey, the division of marital property is called equitable distribution.

Little Finger

You will notice that this finger is not very substantial, however our hand would look incomplete without it. In a divorce case, your pinkie represents the myriad of miscellaneous issues (like tax deductions or a name change) that must be addressed, but are often less important to you than the remainder of the issues. These issues must be taken care of, but are generally not your first priority.