A case in another state shows how dementia affects divorce | Lane & Lane, LLC
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A case in another state shows how dementia affects divorce

New Jersey residents may be interested to know that getting dementia can keep people from divorcing. A judge in another state has ruled that a man is not competent enough to get a divorce. This could be a game changing decision for anyone who is seeking a divorce later in life. Although the husband of 15 years who has dementia claimed he wanted a divorce, his wife claimed that she did not want one because she was still in love with him.

The wife, who is 80 years old, stands to inherit $10 million when her wealthy husband dies and his children are not happy about this development. Their father, who is 87 years old, was not able to pass a basic competency test that included him claiming that the current year is 2017 and that he married his wife in 2012. The judge stated that watching him try to answer the simple questions was sad and painful.

What will happen next is that the case will probably go to probate court. There, a different judge will decide how the husband will spend the rest of his life. His lawyer stated that the legal fight is not over. He says that he may appeal the decision.

The lawyer is also hoping that the probate court will uphold a previous decision to keep the wife of the successful real estate investor from Long Island from getting the estimated $10 million that she was promised in the prenuptial agreement. Under the agreement, she would receive nearly $7 million free and clear upon the death of her husband. She would also receive income from a trust and use of his property until she died, at which time this would transfer to his children.

Growing older can be tough but when people end up with dementia, life can be a struggle for everyone involved. Aging New Jersey residents who are considering a divorce may be interested to know that they may not be able to file for one if they have medical problems, such as early stage dementia. Therefore, they may wish to speak to an attorney to determine exactly what their options are before it is too late.

Source: krmg.com, "Judge rules Florida man with dementia not competent to seek divorce", Jane Musgrave, July 6, 2015

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