New York State Divorce No-Fault Laws

People still ask me if they need “grounds” to get divorced in New York. The answer is NO. With the No-Fault laws in place, the “grounds problem” is not a problem. No longer do you need to allege that your spouse was adulterous, cruel and inhuman, or that she/he abandoned you, constructively or otherwise.

The no-fault divorce provides a legal basis for a divorce whereby one party swears under oath that there has been an irretrievable breakdown of the marriage for a period of six months or more. The court will grant a divorce under this ground, so long as all other issues relating to the divorce have been resolved. This requires a full resolution of all of the economic issues in the case, including equitable distribution of all marital property; the waiver or payment of spousal support; payment of child support; payment of counsel fees and expert fees, if applicable; as well as all issues pertaining to custody and visitation of minor children of the marriage.

A Stipulation of Settlement or Settlement Agreement must be drafted which discusses how all of the issues are being resolved. Reaching an agreement on these issues is generally the most difficult part. It entails both parties ‘willingness’ to negotiate their position in order to amicably resolve their differences. Once the terms are agreed upon and incorporated into an agreement, it is signed by the parties and submitted to the court with the final divorce papers.

Every person’s situation is unique and requires specialized attention. If you are interested in hearing more information regarding a no-fault divorce, please give me a call and we can set up a free consultation where we can discuss your individual needs.

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