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Consequences for Destroying or Disposing of Personal Items Accumulated During Marriage


In recent trending news, a social media story went viral involving a couple going through a divorce. It’s true that in most cases all assets and debts accumulated throughout the marriage will be split evenly between the two parties, but this is obviously not meant to be taken literally as it was in this viral story. This disgruntled spouse literally took a chainsaw to all of the couple’s possessions and split them down the middle. While this may have made for a funny viral story, the other spouse can legally seek compensation for such destruction of mutual property.

Recently, a New Jersey judge ruled that an ex-wife’s refusal to copy or return mutually owned photographs during a divorce was worth financial compensation. After extensively reviewing the evidence, Judge Jones awarded the plaintiff $5,000 in compensation for the 25 years worth of photographs and videos destroyed by the defendant. Each case is unique, but when the plaintiff can prove the defendant intentionally destroyed mutual property, compensation is usually granted.

While frustration and anger are natural human responses to high-tension disagreements, remember that there are legal opportunities for your voice to be heard and your rights to be enforced in court. Don’t risk the legal and financial consequences of destroying property, rather seek out counsel from an experienced divorce attorney that can ensure your concerns are heard and respected.

At Nitti & Nitti, we understand the emotional turmoil and tension surrounding divorce proceedings. Our goal is to work with you individually to protect your rights and ensure a favorable outcome in your case. Our attorneys have worked in New Jersey’s family courts for over 30 years to resolve disagreements in divorce cases, so you can rely on our experience and expertise to guide you through this difficult time in your life. When you are ready to begin working on your case together, reach out to our attorneys at 973-226-4141 or via our online contact form to get started today.

The articles on this blog are for informative purposes only and are no substitute for legal advice or an attorney/client relationship. If you are seeking legal advice, please contact our law firm directly.