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Divorce - General, Laws and Process
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There are a lot of misconceptions and misinformation out there regarding marriage and parenting between partners of the same sex. It is important before entering into any relationship, that you are aware of all of the rights, obligations and potential complications that may occur.
At Last - Same Sex Marriage by Robyn D. Weisman, Esq.
Civil Union Couples can gain tremendous benefits from using divorce mediation to create divorce and parenting agreements, as well as prenuptial agreements.
As an attorney and a mediator, I can’t tell you how many times I have heard this scenario: A husband and wife, father and mother are constantly fighting, there is a lot of tension in the household but the couple has been told one party cannot leave the household.
Mediation - The Big Lie by Catharine M. Venzon, Esq.
In a perfect world, parties would not need attorneys to settle their family disputes. In this world, both Mom and Dad would have time for a career and a family, with both parents taking an equal role in childrearing. However, we do not live in a perfect world, and as a result, more than half of recent marriages will end in divorce1.
Introduction to Post-Divorce Modifications by Catharine M. Venzon, Esq.
Post-divorce modifications occur when a party seeks to change a prior judgment of divorce or an incorporated, unmerged agreement between the parties. The party may seek to modify an agreement mere days after a judgment was rendered, or several years afterwards.
Divorce Does Not Equal Deportation by Catharine M. Venzon, Esq.
Matrimonial Lawyers must know fundamental immigration law when representing Foreign Nationals (FN) in divorce proceedings. Non-immigrant visas allow FN’s to enter the United States for a variety of reasons, such as business, education, or pleasure. A FN’s family may accompany the principal applicant depending on the purpose and duration of the trip.
In the last decade, courts have taken a much more conservative approach when it comes to awarding a spouse a portion of the value of a professional license or degree earned by the other spouse during the marriage.
Who Gets Custody of the Dog? by Wisselman & Associates
This question is extremely common between divorcing spouses and the answer often surprises people: pets are considered property and therefore, in the event of divorce, possession of the pet will, for the most part, be treated no differently than any other personal property.
In New York State no fault divorce became effective on October 12, 2010. The matrimonial legislation requires that one party declare the marriage has been irretrievably broken for a period of six months and the marriage may then be dissolved.
There may come a time during your divorce action that you are compelled to seek immediate relief from the Court. As an example, you sold the marital home and are concerned that your spouse will commandeer the proceeds of the sale after closing and do as he pleases with the money. Or your spouse is in the process of cleaning out the marital joint account.
How to Prepare for the Divorce by Dolly Hinckley, Mediator
If you think that your marriage may be heading for divorce, there are some things that you could do to prepare yourself for the legal and financial divorce.
3 Tips for Dating After Divorce by Brian D. Perskin, Esq.
It can be tempting to start dating again soon after divorce, especially if you are not used to being alone. But you should follow some guidelines for dating after divorce. Otherwise, you may find yourself not only heartbroken again, but also facing consequences in court.
If you are having a hard time with your divorce, you should focus on finding some friends to help you through it. Even if your current group of friends is supportive, it is a good idea to seek out new relationships as you go through this ordeal. There are a few reasons for this.
The "Good Divorce" is Not an Oxymoron by Darcia C. Tudor, JD, LMHC, CWM
Divorce, like the unexpected death of a parent, the onset of a life threatening illness of a child, or the unsuspecting loss of the primary earners employment , creates a temporal family crisis that places an extraordinary amount of psychological, financial, and physical stress on each member of the family.
Senior Divorce Is More Common Than Ever by Brian D. Perskin, Esq.
Divorce among the elderly has become more rampant in recent years. In fact, according to a 2010 study in South Korea, the divorce rate among people over 50 years old in that country is now higher than the rate of younger people. There are various reasons for this trend, just as there are several reasons for each individual divorce.
You may be aware of the impact Facebook can have during divorce, as you are advised not to post your personal information online during that time. However, recent studies have shown that Facebook can actually lead to divorce.
The Consequences of Equality by Alla Roytberg, Esq.
New York State has passed changes regarding marriages between persons of the same gender. A triumph for equality now legalizing a same-sex marriage.
People who are going through a separation or a divorce are often frustrated with the emotional and financial cost of the divorce process.
In today’s mobile society, the Family Law practitioner has to be very careful about where to bring a proceeding and when to request a dismissal.
College Expenses and Divorce by Barton R. Resnicoff, Esq.
In todays society, very few people would doubt the need for a High School graduate to go on to and complete college. A college degree is as much as necessity today as a high school diploma was thirty years ago. With that in mind, when the Child Support Standards Act (CSSA) was passed in 1989 , a specific provision was included to permit a direction for educational expenses.
Law Guardians are a very misunderstood breed, especially by law guardians themselves, and even sometimes by judges, not to mention other lawyers and litigants. Too many believe that a law guardians role is well defined, yet each seems to conduct him or herself according to his or her own desire.
No Choice for Children by Catharine M. Venzon, Esq.
The Memorandum and Order by the Third Department In the Matter of Mark T. v. Joyanna U. et al., decided and entered July 30, 2009, highlights the flaws in the New York State law guardian process governing matters of custody, visitation, and guardianship proceedings.
U.S. Sponsors of Foreign Nationals Beware! by Catharine M. Venzon, Esq. and William Z. Reich, Esq.
If you think that New York State Supreme and Family Court are the only avenues to sue for spousal support, think again. A foreign national spouse may be eligible for support from a sponsor and can sue to enforce that support through federal court.
The Immigration and Naturalization Service has always had a concern that aliens seeking permanent resident status in the United States will marry solely to gain that status, thereby circumventing the Immigration Laws.
Many people in New York are from other countries. When the divorce becomes inevitable, both the immigrant spouse and the citizen/permanent resident spouse will also have to consider how to handle immigration issues.
Removal proceedings sometimes become an eminent possibility after a divorce. Few divorce lawyers are familiar with immigration consequences following a divorce.
On April 16, 2007, Justice Robert A. Ross, in Nassau County Supreme Court, issued a decision that summarizes the profoundly negative consequences of New York’s antiquated divorce law.
New York Divorce Procedures by J. Douglas Barics, Esq.
While people are free to enter into a marriage, only a court can dissolve a marriage. In New York, an action for a divorce must be brought in Supreme Court, which is New York’s trial level court of general jurisdiction. Family Court, despite its name, does not have the authority to grant a divorce. Family Court does share concurrent jurisdiction with Supreme Court on many other domestic relations issues.
If your lawyer starts out trying to negotiate a settlement for you without filing in court, great! But if it is taking too long, file in court so that you some controls applied by the court. Every case has a start, and every case must have an end. If you need support, do not wait too long to file in court, or the court will think you maybe do not really need it.
Why Gay Marriage? by Mace H. Greenfield, Esq.
Years ago, the big reason for gay marriage was health insurance, but today, you can obtain insurance for a live in partner through your employer.
This article explains what you should know and do BEFORE going for a divorce consultation with a New York State Divorce Lawyer.
Expectations & Reality in Divorce by Annett Spronz, CFP & Certified Divorc Financial Analyst
When a couple marries, their expectation is to live the myth of marriage, ". ..and they lived happily ever after". The reality is very different. In Nassau County the divorce rate is 51 %. In Suffolk the rate is 50%. The divorce rate for second marriages is even higher.
Divorce and Social Security Benefits by Robert E. Nowak , Esq.
This article is a brief overview of the Social Security system and the benefits available to a divorced spouse. For ease of writing, references will be made to the dependent spouse as being the wife. The law applies equally to the husband.
Changing Court Orders or Judgments by J. Douglas Barics, Esq.
Divorce and family law in New York is confusing enough, but very often parties to a divorce get bogged down in procedural issues. Questions such as the above are commonly asked by litigants who for whatever reason, are unhappy with a court order and seek to change it.
What to do if Your Marriage Does not Work by Elliot S. Schlissel, Esq.
Few situations are as stressful as a family breakup. Everyone involved needs as much sympathy and support as friends and family can muster. Often spouses feel that a separation to give the parties time to think about future action whether to move forward with a divorce or to seek counseling or reconciliation is an effective way to deal with marital difficulties.
DO YOU HAVE OR KNOW WHERE TO FIND (without asking your spouse)Your birth certificate? Your spouse’s birth certificate? Birth certificates for each child? Your marriage license or certificate? Divorce decrees or death certificates regarding any prior marriage? Records showing title to the family real estate and the cost basis adjusted for improvements and depreciation? Real and personal property tax receipts? Income tax returns for the past four years? Title to your cemetery lot or mausoleum, if any? Titles to automobiles, boats, motors, etc? Your social security number? Your spouse’s social security number? Social security numbers of each of your children? Where your spouse keeps life insurance policies?
When the parties cannot agree to settle their marital dispute, the next step is for the court to resolve the issues. This is known as a contested action. Each case necessarily differs on its facts but the following outline illustrates the process.
In Baraby v. Baraby, 250 AD2d 201 (3 rd Dept, 1998) it was held that when a trial court makes a determination of child support, it has no authority award recoupment for payments made in excess of the award. This applies when there is a temporary order of child support and the trial court orders a lower amount.
Divorce Actions - Know Your Rights by Sherri Donovan, Esq.
The decision to seek a divorce or separation is a difficult one under any circumstances. Each matrimonial action is unique to the parties involved. The one common theme in all matrimonial actions is the importance of having a general knowledge of the applicable law.
Chronology of a Matrimonial Action by Sherri Donovan, Esq.
The following is a general outline of the procedure which a matrimonial action usually follows including how a divorce or separation is procured and equitable distribution effectuated.
The Pitfalls of the Divorce Process by Sherri Donovan, Esq.
Listening to your spouse’s version of the law - it is usually wrong. . Not answering or ignoring legal papers - court judgments can be made against your interest.
How to Prepare for Your Divorce by Sherri Donovan, Esq.
There are steps you can take that will help empower you, save you money, and achieve better results as you are going through a divorce.
The parties are free to chart their own course in a divorce action. If each party recognizes that marriage is an economic partnership, are forthright in disclosing all marital assets, and are willing to share those assets, a costly and time-consuming trial can be avoided.
Pre-Trial Written Motions in Divorce Cases by J. Douglas Barics, Esq.
A motion is defined as a request for an order from the court, prior to the conclusion of the case. (Motions are available after trial as well, but those are beyond the scope of this article). Pre trial orders are sometimes necessary to compel a party to a lawsuit to do something.
New York Supreme Court and Family Court by J. Douglas Barics, Esq.
Many cases will involve both Family Court and Supreme Court. The role of these two courts is often not obvious, and while they share jurisdiction over several domestic issues, there are significant differences between the two.
New York Paternity Proceedings by J. Douglas Barics, Esq.
Paternity is the term by which a father is granted legally enforceable rights and responsibilities to his child. Paternity may be established in one of three ways. If the parties are married, New York presumes the husband of any children of the marriage. This presumption can be rebutted.
Common Law Marriages in New York by Robert E. Nowak , Esq.
A common law marriage is a private or informal marriage. These marriages were recognized from ancient times to the middle of the eighteenth century in England. A common law marriage is a valid marriage and to terminate the marriage a proceeding must be commenced in court. Despite the fact that many people refer to living ’common law’, a valid common law may or may not exist depending on the surrounding circumstances and the state of residence of the parties.
This article is a brief overview of the law in New York concerning invalid marriages. As with any court proceeding a matrimonial attorney should always be consulted. This article is not intended to be any form of legal advice and is not to be relied upon as such.
Deciding to Divorce by Howard Raab , Esq.
One option for you to consider is to meet with a therapist, counselor or clergy person. Additionally, you can open lines of communication with your spouse concerning issues that are currently troubling you. Explore your current emotional and physical well being to determine that there are no other problems that are affecting your decision. Divorce should be your final solution to your problem.
It is important that you are made aware of mediation. Mediation is a process in which you and your spouse work out your financial and marital differences with the assistance of a neutral party known as a Mediator.
Divorce Grounds in New York by Robert E. Nowak , Esq.
The following is a brief overview of the grounds for divorce in the State of New York. It is not intended to be a thorough analysis of the individual grounds and the interpretation given each ground by the various courts.
New York Decisions of Interest by Robert E. Nowak , Esq.
A rather strange decision in light of the equitable distribution law. If a divorce is denied, there can be no equitable distribution of property and the parties remain husband and wife, presumably in name only. Of course, the party who is denied a divorce in New York can always establish a bona fide residence in a no-fault state (Conn. or New Jersey, for example) and obtain a divorce in that state.
The process of hiring an attorney is probably the most important part of a case, regardless of what area of the law that case is in. How you start, the lawyer you select, the personal relationship that you have with the lawyer, the financial relationship, and the understanding of the process as you go along are probably the most critical elements of a successful case.

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New York's Child Support Standards Act provides child support guidelines and enforcement. Child support is calculated by examining the incomes of both parents and the child's basic monthly living expenses, among other things.

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