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                                        122 N.J.L.J. 1246
                                        November 10, 1988


Appointed by the Supreme Court of New Jersey


Contingent Fee for Recovery
of Post Divorce Alimony Arrearages

    The Inquirer asks whether he may represent a prospective client who desires to retain him, on a contingent fee basis, to recover post-judgment alimony arrears. The judgment of divorce was entered in the Superior Court of New Jersey in 1983, and the debtor ex-spouse resides in New Jersey. The amount of alimony was determined by the original judgment of the divorce, and the contemplated action seeks recovery of the arrearages.
    RPC 1.5(d)(1) provides:
        (d) A lawyer shall not enter into an arrangement for, charge, or collect:

        (1) any fee in a domestic relations matter, the payment or amount of which is contingent upon the securing of a divorce or upon the amount of alimony or support, or property settlement in lieu thereof;... .

    We are of the opinion that the foregoing Rule does not preclude the contingent fee representation, since the contemplated action is related to post-judgment alimony, and does not seek the initial determination of alimony or support, which is prohibited by RPC 1.5(d)(1).

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