I'm sorry to hear of your dilemma.
The way that you would respond to the notice of a Cross-Motion/Counter-Motion would be the exact same way that you would respond to a Motion. You will need to prepare, file and serve a Response to Notice of Cross-Motion. Points and Authorities and Declaration(s) (if appropriate). You will state why the granting of the other party's motion would be in appropriate, citing applicable statutory and/or case law, and ask the court to deny the Motion in its entirety.
The judge is not obligated to grant a continuance simply because one party or the other is without an attorney. While some judges will do this for a short time---especially if you have a new attorney and your attorney needs a few weeks to get up to speed---however, the granting of a continuance/adjournment is entirely at the discretion of the judge hearing the matter.
If the court finds that either party has acted in bad faith as regards the litigation of a matter before the court, the judge has the authority to order that the party who has acted in bad faith shall pay to the opposing side their reasonable and necessary legal expenses and legal fees associated with the defending of their position. While this does not happen frequently, judges tend to be quite harsh when they sense that a party has acted in bad faith---and their Order of payment of fees is all but impossible to appeal.
All property acquired during the marriage, or paid for during the marriage, is considered to be marital property. Now, New Jersey is not a Community Property
state, but rather divides marital property between the divorcing spouses based upon the theory of Equitable Distribution
Equitable distribution looks at a number of factors in determining how to divide the marital assets and debts.
Factors which the court typically considers include:
1. The length of the marriage.
2. The amount of work done to accumulate/improve the property.
3. Fault of one spouse or the other for the break-up—such as adultery
4. The earning capacities of the spouses.
5. Separate property held by each spouse.
6. The value of the contribution of a spouse who maintains the home as a home-maker.
While there often is a division of marital assets along the lines of the respective incomes of the spouses and the concomitant contribution of those incomes to the purchase/improvement of those assets, the judge has great discretion and may also choose to weigh the contribution to the marriage by the spouses in non financial terms, such as homemaking and rearing of children.
The rent money that he gave you is highly unlikely to be awarded back to him---that was simply money spent by the marital estate, during the marriage.
I wish you the best in 2011.
Because I help people here, like you, for a living---this is not a hobby for me, and I sincerely appreciate your abiding by the honor system as regards Accepting answers. I wish you and your family the best in your respective futures.
Would you be so kind as to Accept my Answer so that I may be compensated for assisting you? Bonuses for greatly informative and helpful answers are very much appreciated. Thanks Again,