New York Divorce Lawyer
New York divorce lawyer Gregory Salant can help guide you during your divorce. Ending a marriage is not an easy decision. There are complex issues involved and legal implications. However, being well-informed of the available options can help you avoid unnecessary stress. There are a number of legal ways to end a legal marriage, including an annulment, a declaration of nullity and a divorce.
An annulment is a legal action that ends a marriage by treating it as if it never happened. In some religious circles, people who have gone through a divorce are not permitted to remarry. In these situations, a person may choose an annulment in order to remarry within the church. When the court grants an annulment, marital property is divided and child support and child custody issues are addressed.
A divorce is the most common legal action for ending a marriage. Some states such as New York recognize both at-fault or no-fault divorces. In a fault divorce, a spouse/spouses need to prove that the other spouse did something wrong which made it necessary to get the divorce. In a no-fault divorce, spouses don’t need to prove fault. They can simply give any reason for the divorce that is recognized by the State.
A divorce can be either contested or uncontested divorce.
- In a contested divorce the spouses disagree. This may be about the terms of the divorce, such as property division, allocation of debts, spousal support or child support. Hence, the court determines the terms of the divorce.
- In an uncontested divorce, the spouses agree on all the terms. Therefore, all issues are determined by an agreement between them, with the court’s approval. The court then issues a judgment which includes all the terms of the divorce, such as property division, allocation of debt, spousal support, child custody, child support, shared parenting or other terms. The marriage ends officially when the judgment is recorded in the county clerk’s office.
If spouses are not ready for a divorce but want to live apart, they may choose a legal separation. A legal separation allows the spouses to live separately but remain married. A separation agreement that establishes the terms of the separation is filed with the court. However, if the spouses don’t agree on the terms of the separation, they ask the court to order a separation and establish its terms.
In the declaration of nullity, a marriage becomes invalid, as if there was no marriage at all. This happens in rare cases, either due to incest, bigamy/polygamy or improper solemnization. In such cases, the spouses can ask for a declaration of nullity (a formal record that states marriage is and always was void).