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Faced 5+ Years in Prison

People Vs Joseph Amico

Covered by NYDaily News. Las Vegas man accused of threatening a prominent attorney and making vile remarks.

Faced 10+ Years in Prison

People Vs. Anna Sorokin

Covered by New York Times, and other outlets. Fake heiress accused of conning the city’s wealthy, and has an HBO special being made about her.

Faced 3+ Years in Prison

People Vs. Genevieve Sabourin

Accused of stalking Alec Baldwin. The case garnered nationwide attention, with USAToday, NYPost, and other media outlets following it closely.

Faced Potential Charges

Ghislaine Maxwell Juror

Juror who prompted calls for new Ghislaine Maxwell trial turns to lawyer who defended Anna Sorokin.

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Meet Todd Spodek

WE PROVIDE WHITE GLOVE SERVICE TO CLIENTS
WHO WANT MORE FROM THEIR ATTORNEY

The Spodek Law Group understands how delicate high-profile cases can be, and has a strong track record of getting positive outcomes. Our lawyers service a clientele that is nationwide. With offices in both LA and NYC, and cases all across the country - Spodek Law Group is a top tier law firm.

Todd Spodek is a second generation attorney with immense experience. He has many years of experience handling 100’s of tough and hard to win trials. He’s been featured on major news outlets, such as New York Post, Newsweek, Fox 5 New York, South China Morning Post, Insider.com, and many others.

In 2022, Netflix released a series about one of Todd’s clients: Anna Delvey/Anna Sorokin.

Why Clients Choose Spodek Law Group

The reason is simple: clients want white glove service, and lawyers who can win. Every single client who works with the Spodek Law Group is aware that the attorney they hire could drastically change the outcome of their case. Hiring the Spodek Law Group means you’re taking your future seriously. Our lawyers handle cases nationwide, ranging from NYC to LA. Our philosophy is fair and simple: our nyc criminal lawyers only take on clients who we know will benefit from our services.

We’re selective about the clients we work with, and only take on cases we know align with our experience – and where we can make a difference. This is different from other law firms who are not invested in your success nor care about your outcome.

If you have a legal issue, call us for a consultation.
We are available 24/7, to help you with any – and all, challenges you face.

Best NYC Divorce Lawyers and Divorce Attorneys

The Spodek Law Group is a boutique NYC divorce law firm located in NYC. Our firm concentrates our practice in the areas of family and divorce law. We serve all 5 boroughs, including long island, and Westchester. We’re recognized as one of the top divorce law firms in the state of New York – and focus on litigation, mediation, collaborative law, and more. We provide comprehensive, and compassionate, legal service – handling issues such as litigation, negotiation, mediation, prenup agreements, postnup agreements, child custody, child support, spousal maintenance, and more.

Sensitivity to your family

We’re sensitive to your families needs, and have the skills and capacity to provide the best possible legal services for our clients. In addition, our firm has significant experience handling high net worth cases, in addition to providing effective prenup and postnup agreement legal assistance. Our skilled NYC divorce attorneys are committed to providing personal attention, prompt responses to individuals, provide a clear explanation of your options, creative solutions to legal problems, and well thought out legal solutions.

At the Spodek Law Group, our one and only job, is to help you understand your legal options and get you the best possible resolution. Ending your marriage is stressful. We get it. It’s one of the worst things possible. Regardless of whether you’re the one who filed for divorce, or if you’ve been served with divorce papers – it’s going to invoke a lot of emotions. Often, our clients feel a wide array of emotions.

Top NYC Divorce Lawyers

We have an impressive team of divorce attorneys, and support staff, who work hand in hand to support each and every client. For your convenience, we have offices in NYC, Brooklyn, Long Island, and more. We specialize in handling tough cases that require negotiation, collaborative law, and more. Divorce can be one of the most stressful experiences in a person’s life. If the split is contentious, negotiations and court hearings can drag on for what seems like forever. Even if you and your spouse negotiate an agreement, you’ll be dealing with a lot of negative emotions and uncertainty about the future. But for many people, getting a divorce is one of the best and most courageous decisions they can make.

When you’re considering a divorce, it’s important to get a consultation with a NYC divorce lawyer. They can review the facts of your case and explain your options going forward. If you believe they’re knowledgeable and able to advocate for your position, consider hiring them as your law attorney. Your attorney will make sure all your paperwork is filed properly, all the necessary evidence is compiled, and that negotiations are completed in a constructive manner. Ideally, they’ll work with your spouse’s lawyer to reach a negotiation that works for everyone. If you can’t come to an agreement, though, they’ll represent you at court hearings, where a judge will mandate the agreement.

Divorce isn’t just complicated emotionally, it’s also complicated legally. There are a great deal of concerns and challenges you need to consider. An ideal attorney will help ensure you have the most painless divorce process possible.

In a divorce, you need to divide both your marital and business assets. You also need to make child custody arrangements, determine child support payments, and determine spousal support. New York divorce lawyers understand the unique local laws and the way your jurisdiction operates. They can make sure all necessary details are addressed. In addition, they’ll advocate for a solution that meets your wishes.

Divorce attorneys do more than just help with the legal aspect of things. They also provide emotional support. When you’re having trouble thinking clearly, your NYC divorce lawyer can also offer clarity and insight. They don’t have the same emotional involvement in the situation that you do, so they can take a more analytical approach.

An experienced NYC divorce attorney can help in any of these areas:

Contested Divorces in NYC

A contested divorce occurs when some aspect of the divorce is disagreed upon. In some cases, one party won’t want the divorce to be happening at all. This can make it difficult to go through the procedure in court, as a judge is unlikely to grant a divorce to a person who doesn’t want it. Contested divorces also occur if there’s a disagreement about spousal support amounts, child support amounts, child custody, or the distribution of assets.

Uncontested Divorce in NYC

Uncontested divorces are a much easier type of divorce. In an uncontested divorce, both parties come to an agreement regarding the terms of their split. An uncontested divorce is the most ideal type of agreement. It’s often possible to reach a settlement after some negotiation. A NYC divorce lawyer can help ensure that you get what you want, have a legally binding contract, and have all important details accounted for. They’ll also streamline the process to make it easier.

Child Custody Arrangements in NYC

Child custody is one of the biggest parts of a divorce if you have children. For unmarried parents, child custody cases can be negotiated independent of a divorce. These arrangements will determine which parent has primary custody, the schedule for the child to spend time with the parents, and any visitation restrictions. All child custody hearings are ultimately decided by a judge whose job is to rule in the child’s best interest.

Child Support Payments in NYC

When one parent has primary custody, the other parent typically needs to pay child support to fulfill their financial parental obligation. This money is used to help raise the child. Child support payments are first negotiated when the divorce is finalized, but they can also be adjusted if certain circumstances change. A divorce attorney can help you make sure your agreement involves fair child support. They can also help file a petition to adjust child support.

Spousal Support in NYC

Similar to child support payments, spousal support is paid from one spouse to the other to help them remain financially independent. The amount and type of spousal support required will vary depending on the circumstances. An attorney can help you negotiate the payments.

Modifications to Divorce

After the divorce, people sometimes wish to modify their agreement to reflect new terms. An attorney can help you go through this legal process.

Divorce is allowed in New York if one or both spouses have been a resident in the region for at least one year before filing or if you got married in another state but one of the parties has resided in the city continuously for at least two years before the commencement of divorce. Couples can divorce on no-fault grounds or fault-based ground. No-fault grounds came in place on October 12, 2010, where marriage gets dissolved if it has failed to work irretrievably for at least six months. On the other hand, fault-based grounds include inhuman and cruel treatment, three years imprisonment, abandonment, and adultery. In New York, the property is distributed equally except when there was postnuptial or prenuptial agreement. The court may award spousal support during the process to either party after evaluating various factors.

Divorce in New York is complicated because you have to fill many forms even if it is uncontested. Once you fill the documents, you should take them for filing at the county clerk’s office. Afterwards, you will be given an index number for your case. You have to give your spouse copies of the complaints and summons within 120 days, any day except for Sundays. Also, you can have someone close to you deliver the prints as long as they are residents of New York. In case your spouse resides in a different state, you have to follow the rules of that region. For spouses who have kids, you must include a copy of Child Support Standard Chart together with the other documents. Additionally, you should remember to include Form UD-7 (Affidavit of Defendant) with clear instructions on how to fill the paper. It should be filled out by your spouse and sent back within 40 days.

To avoid a trial or have an uncontested divorce, both spouses must settle all issues such as alimony, child support and custody, and division of property. These problems can get solved through mediation whereby you and your spouse come to an amicable agreement, which is subject to be reviewed by a judge. In case you and your spouse fail to agree, you can file the petition in a family court. The court calculates child support based on the standards which the child or children enjoyed before the divorce. In New York, 17 forms get filled for an uncontested divorce. The forms can be downloaded and printed. Regardless of who filed for divorce, if the wife adopted the name of the spouse, divorce petition can be used to restore the maiden name.

Divorce can be a confusing and challenging process at times. Your family and friends may support you, but the guidance of an attorney is crucial. If you want the process to be fast and painless, you should consider hiring a NYC divorce lawyer in New York through a firm such as Spodek Law Group. New York divorce process requires comprehensive knowledge of the matrimonial law. As mentioned above, divorce involves documentation of paperwork, which can be tough without the guidance of a lawyer. Attorneys go to law school where they are equipped with right skills to handle divorce cases. These NYC divorce lawyers have the right experience to handle all sorts of divorce cases, which is crucial in gathering evidence for your case. More significantly, your nyc divorce attorney will coach you on how to present yourself in court.

Moreover, if you want to win the case, you have to refrain from aggressive behavior in the court of law. Additionally, you will need additional effort to fight for your personal property such as cars. A NYC divorce lawyer / Long Island Divorce lawyer / Los Angeles divorce lawyer will assist you to retain ownership of some of your belongings. Once the divorce case is finalized, you will want to move on with your life. With the aid of an experienced NYC divorce lawyer, you will win a fair settlement to ensure emotional and financial stability.

Divorce comes in many forms, and no one can predict how easy or complicated their divorce might be. That’s the running theme of divorce. You can’t predict anything about divorce. You didn’t predict this would end up being your future when you got married. You can’t predict if it’s something your spouse is willing to go with or if it’s something he or she will fight. You don’t know if it will be an ugly divorce or one that goes uncontested.

An uncontested divorce is ideal. It’s the kind of divorce you go through in which you both agree on everything from your child custody to your alimony, and there is no argument about either. This doesn’t mean you both walk into the divorce with an agreement already in place, but it also doesn’t mean you can’t do just that. You might agree ahead of time if you’re civil, or you might come to an agreement during a mediation hearing with the court. Either way, this is the type of divorce that makes the situation much easier.

Divorce in New York

Divorce in New York is not any different than divorce anywhere else. You must file the appropriate paperwork. You must file a motion for what you want out of the divorce, and your spouse is then served paperwork via a process server. Once the divorce paperwork is served, your spouse has so many days to issue a response to the paperwork. This response might agree to the terms you outline, disagree with them, or your spouse might not even bother with a response at all.
Depending on if or how your spouse responds, you either go into a mediation situation or you are taken right to court to process the divorce as it is. You can hire an attorney for this or you can go ahead and handle the situation on your own. However, there is something to be said for hiring an attorney even if you are dealing with a simple divorce case in which all goes uncontested.

When can I get a divorce in New York?

You can get a divorce anytime you want providing you have a valid reason to end your marriage. Don’t worry if you simply want to be single again or want to be with someone else more than your spouse. Every reason falls into at least acceptable divorce category in New York
– Your spouse abandoned you one year ago or longer
– Your spouse has been incarcerated for at least three years of your marriage
– Your spouse is treating you with cruelty or inhuman behavior
– Your spouse cheated on you
– Your spouse has been living elsewhere for a year or more due to separation
– You are experiencing irreconcilable differences
If you have a reason other than abuse or adultery, you typically cite irreconcilable differences. This is perfectly legal so long as your marriage has been in trouble for six months or longer without any chance of fixing it.

Hire a NYC Divorce Attorney
If you want to get a divorce, hire an experienced NYC divorce attorney can help you get through this process with ease. An experienced divorce attorney can help you figure out how to approach the situation, how to focus on getting what you want, and your attorney can read any divorce decrees with a legal eye. This helps you learn how specific terminology might look beneficial to you but really isn’t. Don’t let yourself end up in a bad place due to your divorce. It’s time to hire an attorney.

Spodek Law Group is focused on providing the highest level possible, of service, and results, for our clients. If you’re facing a divorce/matrimonial/family law issue, we encourage you to contact us for a risk free consultation. Nothing is more difficult than potentially facing a divorce/matrimonial issue, and not knowing where to turn. If your spouse is in control of the finances, or if you’re unsure on how to protect your children from an abusive spouse – the Spodek Law Group is here to help.

We have experience handling some of the toughest divorce cases, and are ready to share our experience with you. With 1000’s of divorce and family law cases handled by our firm, we understand how to handle complicated situations.

Don’t trust an amateur NYC divorce law firm

It’s simple. Your future is at risk. You have to make sure you make the right decisions so you, and your children, are protected. Divorce can amicable, or at the very least – not painful, if you hire a divorce attorney who has experience, and knows how to handle complicated situations.

The Spodek Law Group is a reputable and top rated NYC divorce law firm. If you’re in need of a divorce and family law attorney, we can help. There is no need to keep looking – our NYC divorce attorneys are here to help you. The #1 reason why our firm is able to get better results than other law firms is the fact we treat you like family. Most law firms practice law – like a conveyer belt. There’s no added value, no additional service – no reason to continue working with the firm. Our practice, at Spodek Law Group – is about taking on fewer clients – but giving each client the white glove service and results they want, expect, and need, to make sure they – and their family, are well taken care of.

Ending your marriage can be one of the most difficult things ever. It takes an emotional, and financial, toll on your health. If your spouse serves you with a divorce petition, you want to speak to an NYC divorce lawyer who can help you. The attorney you hire can help you determine the best possible options for handling the situation and reaching a favorable outcome. At the Spodek Law Group, we understand how difficult a divorce can be. Our goal is to provide you with the best possible representation. When you work with us, we approach the situation by understanding your objectives, and creating a strategy to help you achieve that. As your divorce attorney, the Spodek Law Group has over 40 years of combined experience providing individualized legal representation for each and every client we represent.

As a skilled negotiator and trial attorney, Todd Spodek is one of the top rated New York divorce lawyers around, and isn’t afraid to go to trial if needed. If you’re looking for an attorney to fight for your rights, the Spodek Law group is here to help you. Our team of NYC divorce attorneys is persuasive, and eloquent, inside, and outside of court. We make ourselves available 24/7 to help you get a risk free consultation.  Our belief is that while it’s best to settle your case through negotiations, it’s critical that you not avoid adversity. Not every marriage will end successfully, statistics show that divorces are going up, more and more marriages are ending early. When you’re involved in a situation like this, it’s critical you hire the very best NYC divorce attorney.

Divorce is not an easy experience. Many divorces escalate beyond the point of negotiation – and require litigation. If this happens, you want to make sure the NYC divorce lawyer you’ve hired can litigate your divorce in family court. It’s probable that your spouse will hire their own legal attorneys as well. As a result, you should do the same. The divorce process will begin when one, or both spouses, send a divorce petition to the family courts. The petition will be served by a process server to the other spouse, which provides them with an opportunity to respond. If the other spouse refuses to respond, or is unable to be served, it can change the process. In some instances, an NYC family court judge will grant a judgement in favor of the petitioner, and grant the divorce even if the other spouse is unresponsive. Our NYC divorce lawyers recognize the emotional aspects of divorces, and we are here to help our clients with the assistance they need. We do not give cookie cutter advice.
The divorce process in NY is simple, yet can be complicated by either spouse. The best way to learn how to handle this complicated process is speaking to the Spodek Law Group. Our firm has handled thousands of family and divorce law matters. We handle each client, by create a unique strategy rooted in years of experience, and refusing to take shortcuts. We have knowledge in all areas of NY family and judicial law, with an emphasis on helping clients prepare for all outcomes that might arise.

Divorce is a complicated process

Going through a divorce can be a gut-wrenching and overwhelming experience, one that can leave you feeling lost and alone as you navigate the unknowns of legal proceedings, financial strain and emotional turmoil. But there is a beacon of hope in the midst of all this turmoil: hiring the right divorce lawyer.

A divorce lawyer with skill, experience and expertise can be a true partner in this difficult journey, tirelessly working to guide you through the legal system, fiercely protecting your rights and assets, and advocating for a fair and just settlement. But how do you find the lawyer who will truly understand your unique needs and fight for you with passion and dedication?

First and foremost, it’s essential to seek out a lawyer who has a proven track record of handling cases like yours. Whether you’re facing complex issues such as high net worth or child custody, you need a lawyer who has the knowledge and expertise to navigate these challenges. Additionally, it’s crucial to find a lawyer you feel comfortable with and trust to truly represent your best interests.

The next step is to conduct a thorough research. Look for lawyer reviews, ask for recommendations from friends, family and colleagues, and schedule consultations with a few different lawyers to get a sense of who would be the best fit for you. During these consultations, ask important questions such as how the lawyer plans to handle your case, what the estimated cost of representation is, and how the lawyer will communicate with you throughout the process.

Once you’ve found a lawyer that you’re comfortable with, it’s vital to have an open and honest discussion about your expectations and goals. Your lawyer should be able to provide you with a clear and realistic assessment of your case, as well as what you can expect in terms of outcome. They should also be able to explain the legal process to you in a way that you can understand and give you guidance on what the next steps will be.

Hiring the right divorce lawyer can make all the difference in the outcome of your case. It’s essential to take the time to find someone you trust, who has the experience and knowledge to guide you through the process, and who will work tirelessly to protect your rights and interests. With the right lawyer by your side, you can face the challenges of divorce with confidence and strength, knowing that you have an unwavering advocate fighting for you every step of the way.

In conclusion, when you’re going through a divorce, you need a lawyer that you can trust to help you navigate the legal system, protect your rights and assets, and fight for a fair settlement. A skilled and experienced divorce lawyer can make all the difference in the outcome of your case, so make sure to do your research and choose the right one for you. It’s not easy but with the right representation, you can overcome the obstacles and emerge victorious.

Do I need a lawyer? What if I can’t afford one?

When it comes to filing for divorce, it’s crucial to have legal representation. Not only does a lawyer provide invaluable guidance and support through the often-complicated process, but they also ensure that your rights and interests are protected. But what if you’re filing for an uncontested divorce and your spouse is in agreement with everything? In this case, you may consider using the uncontested divorce do-it-yourself program available on the NY State Courts website.

However, if you’re looking to secure custody, child support, spousal support, or divide up marital property or debt, it’s crucial to hire a lawyer. These issues can quickly become complex, and a lawyer can help you navigate them successfully. Additionally, it’s essential to determine if your spouse has a pension, retirement account, insurance, or other significant property before filing for divorce. If you don’t ask for these things in the divorce, you’ll lose them forever.

It’s also worth noting that if the only contested issues in your divorce involve custody or visitation of your children and there are no other financial issues or division of property, you may want to deal with these issues in family court before filing for divorce. By incorporating these family court orders into the divorce, it may make the process more straightforward to handle.

If you’re low-income, you may be able to get a court-appointed lawyer to handle the custody and visitation portion of your divorce, but not the division of property or support portions. Additionally, if you file for an order of protection during the divorce, you may be able to get an attorney appointed for that as well.

For those who do not qualify for a free, court-appointed lawyer, or if you need a lawyer to handle issues that the court-appointed lawyer won’t handle, there may be help available through the law. The judge can order the spouse with more money to pay for the other spouse’s attorney’s fees and the fees and expenses of experts (such as a forensic psychologist) if necessary for the less-monied spouse to be adequately represented in the divorce. The judge will assume that the richer spouse should pay the poorer spouse’s attorney fees, but the richer spouse can try to change the judge’s mind and offer evidence to show why this should not be done. The money would be paid directly to your attorney during the divorce, not at the end. This law also applies to any court cases you may have to bring later to enforce any part of the divorce or custody order that the other spouse is violating.

What if I have a prenup, and I am considering divorce?

A prenuptial agreement, also known as a prenup, is a powerful tool for couples to protect their premarital assets and set clear terms for their financial future in the event of a divorce. This legal document, agreed upon before marriage, can provide peace of mind and financial security for both partners, safeguarding their hard-earned wealth and property.

But why would a couple choose to create a prenup? There are many reasons, such as:

  • To prevent bearing the financial burdens of their spouse upon divorce
  • To protect their premarital assets from being part of the divorce settlement
  • To determine alimony
  • If they have been married before
  • If they have children from before marriage
  • If there is a distinct salary difference between partners

However, if one spouse challenges the terms of the agreement during divorce, it can become much trickier to settle. That’s why it’s important to work with an experienced divorce lawyer who can assess your legal options and help you navigate the process.

But what about children? Can they be part of a prenup? The answer is no. Child custody and parental responsibilities cannot be part of the agreement. These issues will be determined by a judge during the divorce proceedings, with the best interests of the child as the primary consideration. And while child support may be addressed in the prenup, both spouses will always have the right to provide financial support to their child.

What if there are children from a previous marriage? In a prenup, spouses can agree to how assets and property will be shared, including how children from a previous marriage will inherit their designated share of assets in the event of the death of one of the spouses.

But what if one spouse wants to contest the prenup? A prenup can be contested if that spouse can successfully argue against its validity. Reasons for contesting a prenup may include: one spouse signing under duress or coercion, it being unfair or unreasonable, not being notarized, or a lack of full and fair disclosure of all financial information for both spouses.

Finally, prenuptial agreements can also help determine the division of marital assets during divorce proceedings and can even have a “no alimony” clause. However, it’s important to note that a judge will still assess the circumstances of the divorce and may override the agreement if it is deemed unfair or unreasonable.

All in all, a prenuptial agreement can provide valuable protection and peace of mind for couples, but it’s important to work with an experienced attorney and be aware of the legal complexities and considerations involved.

 

New York Divorce Lawyers: FAQ

How do I file for divorce

Navigating the divorce process in New York can be a difficult and emotionally charged journey. However, with the right knowledge and resources, the process can be made much more manageable. One important aspect to understand is the concept of a collaborative divorce. This approach seeks to resolve disputes in a peaceful and non-confrontational manner, often resulting in a more amicable resolution for all parties involved.

When filing for divorce in New York, it is important to meet the residency requirements and understand the grounds for divorce recognized by the state. These grounds include a broken down relationship, inhuman and cruel treatment, abandonment, adultery, imprisonment, separation, and judgment separation.

Gathering the necessary information to complete the forms for an uncontested divorce is also crucial. This includes personal information, marriage certificate, any agreements reached with your spouse, a list of joint or separate property and debts, and any Orders for Protection.

The process of filing for divorce in New York also involves preparing and filing a large number of forms with the County Clerk’s Office. These forms vary depending on whether you have children or not. In addition, it is important to serve the divorce papers to your spouse within 120 days of filing.

It’s important to remember that the divorce process can be a difficult one, but with the right knowledge and resources, you can make the journey much more manageable.

Imagine the heart-wrenching reality of your spouse contesting your divorce. The disagreement and turmoil that ensues can be overwhelming, but it’s important to remember that the court will ultimately make decisions on the issues you and your spouse disagree on.

When it comes to child custody in a New York divorce, emotions run high as the well-being of your precious children is at stake. The two main issues that arise are how the children will divide their time between the parents, and who will make legal decisions concerning the children. If you and your spouse are able to come to an agreement, the procedure for determining custody is relatively straightforward and the judge will likely approve your agreement and include it in the divorce order, as long as it is in the best interests of the child. However, if you and your spouse are unable to agree, the judge will hear arguments from both sides and make a decision based on what is in the best interests of the child.

Alimony is a difficult and emotional topic, as it involves financial support that one spouse pays to help maintain the other spouse’s standard of living. The court takes into consideration various factors when determining the sum, including the financial resources of the parties, job skills and job market in the dependent spouse’s profession, the time it will take the dependent spouse to get education or training to increase their earning ability, the ability of the independent spouse to pay support without compromising their own financial obligations, custody of any children, and any child support the parties pay.

Child support is crucial in ensuring the children’s financial well-being is protected after the divorce. If the parents agree on child support payments, they just have to submit the agreement for the court’s approval. The court will generally accept their agreement as long as certain requirements are met. If the parties don’t agree, the court will use the state’s child support guidelines to determine child support.

In New York, there is no waiting period before filing for a divorce, so you don’t have to show that you have been separated for a period of time before asking for a divorce. The cost of getting a divorce in New York depends on whether you decide to have an attorney and how complicated your divorce is. The initial filing fee to get a divorce in New York is $210 (as of 2020). There are also additional costs like notary services and mailing fees as the process goes on. If you don’t have enough income to pay for the fee, you might qualify for a fee waiver.

While having an attorney can ensure the best outcome, especially if your spouse contests, it is not necessary to file for a divorce by yourself. The New York Unified Court System provides the resources you need to file for divorce without using an attorney. However, if your spouse disagrees with the divorce or significant issues in the divorce, it is recommended that you speak to an experienced family law attorney for guidance and support.

What are the grounds for divorce?

Are you considering a divorce in New York State? It’s important to understand the laws and grounds for divorce in the state, as they can have a significant impact on the outcome of your case. In New York, there are seven specific grounds that can be used to justify a divorce. These include Irretrievable Breakdown, Cruel and Inhuman Treatment, Abandonment, Imprisonment, Adultery, Judgment of Separation, and Separation Agreement. Each of these grounds carries its own unique requirements and considerations, and it’s crucial to understand which one may apply to your situation.

When it comes to the process of getting a divorce in New York, you’ll need to go to the New York State Supreme Court in your county. These courts handle all divorce cases in the state, and it’s where you’ll need to file your paperwork and attend any necessary court appearances. Keep in mind that while Family Court can handle child support and custody matters, they do not have the authority to grant a divorce.

Additionally, it’s important to note that the divorce judgment will include orders about marital property and debts, as well as child custody, visitation, child support, and spousal support. These details can have a significant impact on your future, so it’s important to understand the laws and considerations involved in these areas as well.

So, if you’re considering a divorce in New York State, it’s important to understand the laws and grounds for divorce, as well as the process and potential outcomes. It’s also essential to seek the guidance of a qualified attorney who can help you navigate the complexities of the divorce process, and ensure that your rights and interests are protected throughout.

Are you facing the possibility of divorce? It’s a difficult and emotional time, but understanding the process can help you navigate it with more ease. One of the most common ways to file for divorce in New York is through the grounds of irretrievable breakdown, also known as “no fault” divorce. This option has been available since 2010, and it allows couples to divorce without having to prove fault on either side. However, it’s important to note that this is not the only way to file for divorce and other grounds may apply in your case.

Another way to file for divorce is through a “conversion divorce.” This type of divorce allows a couple to convert their existing Separation Agreement into a divorce. This can make the process of divorce easier and faster. It’s important to note that even if you’re seeking a divorce on other grounds, having a Separation Agreement in place can make the process smoother.

When it comes to divorce in New York, there are also “residency requirements” that must be met. These requirements give a New York court the power to decide your divorce case. In most cases, one of the spouses must have lived in New York for at least one year before filing for divorce.

Property is also a significant aspect of divorce, and the law states that it should be divided equitably. This means that the court will divide the marital property as fairly as possible, usually 50/50, but this does not always have to happen.

So, how can you make your divorce go as smoothly as possible? One of the best ways is to try and settle as much as possible with your spouse before going to court. If you and your spouse can agree on how to divide the property, pay support, and settle any debts, you will not need a trial, which takes much longer and usually costs more money. Try to get child support and child custody orders from Family Court before you file for divorce. If your spouse is abusive, it’s important to get the help of a domestic violence advocate before you try to negotiate these important things.

Your spouse may argue against your reason for divorce for various reasons, including emotional and financial reasons. Ending the marriage allows the court to divide property even if your spouse doesn’t agree to do so. Your spouse may want to remain married to be eligible for your health insurance coverage or may want to stay married for ten years to qualify for Social Security retirement benefits. It’s important to note that even if you don’t get a divorce, your spouse must still support you for as long as the marriage lasts, and you can get a spousal support order from Family Court while you are still married.

Finally, if your spouse has filed for divorce against you, it’s important to respond in writing to the court and your spouse if you are served with divorce papers. You usually only have 20 days to send your written response, which is called an Answer. It’s best to seek the guidance of a qualified attorney who can help you navigate the complexities of the divorce process, and ensure that your rights and interests are protected throughout.

How is property divided during a divorce?

As you said your vows and exchanged rings with your beloved spouse, the thought of shared property and assets may not have crossed your mind. However, the reality is that the moment you became husband and wife, your separate property and investments became intertwined with those of your spouse’s. This is known as separate property. As the years passed, you and your partner undoubtedly acquired more property and financial assets, which are now considered part of the marital estate. But there’s a way to safeguard certain property and assets from being included in the marital estate – by entering into a marital agreement, such as a prenuptial or postnuptial agreement. Without such an agreement, all property and assets acquired during the marriage are presumed to be marital property, with the exception of inheritances, personal injury/worker’s compensation awards for pain and suffering, and gifts given by a third party.

Marital property encompasses a wide range of assets, including:

  • Real property purchased during the marriage, with the exception of any contributions made to the property using your separate property funds, such as paying for a portion or all of the down payment.
  • Personal property, such as cars, boats, airplanes, furniture, and artwork, acquired during the marriage.
  • Cash, securities, bank accounts, retirement accounts, and pensions accumulated during the marriage.
  • Advanced educational degrees and permits to engage in specialized businesses acquired during the marriage.
  • Gifts exchanged between you and your spouse.

It’s important to remember that these assets and property that you’ve accumulated together are not just numbers on a balance sheet, but rather tangible symbols of the life you’ve built together. They represent the memories, milestones and dreams you’ve shared, and they deserve to be treated with care and consideration during any legal proceedings.

When it comes to dividing assets and property in the event of legal separation or divorce, the concept of separate property is crucial. Separate property includes assets and property that you or your spouse owned or acquired prior to the marriage, such as:

  • Real property obtained or owned before the marriage
  • Personal property obtained or owned before the marriage
  • Property obtained through inheritance or gift from someone other than your spouse during the marriage
  • Compensation received for personal injuries not related to loss of wages or earning capacity during the marriage
  • Property acquired in exchange for your separate property during the marriage
  • Any increase in the value of your separate property, with the exception of contributions or efforts made by your spouse or self during the marriage
  • Property described as separate property in a written agreement between you and your spouse

When it comes to dividing these assets, you and your spouse can agree on the division of marital and separate property, or if you cannot agree, the court will decide after a trial. The court will also determine what would be a fair and equitable, though not necessarily equal, division of the marital property.

In New York, the division of property in a divorce is not a simple 50/50 split. Instead, the court takes into account a variety of factors to determine an equitable distribution of property, taking into account the unique circumstances and needs of each spouse. This includes considering the income and property of each spouse at the time of the marriage and at the time of the divorce, the length of the marriage, the age and health of both spouses, and any minor children involved.

One specific example of this is when one spouse has earned a degree or professional license during the marriage, such as a medical degree. Prior to January 23, 2016, such degrees and licenses were considered marital property and subject to equitable distribution. However, after that date, they are no longer distinguishable but are still considered as a factor in the court’s decision making. The court may not close down the business but may order the spouse to pay a fixed amount for their contribution to the degree and business annually over a period of several years or in a lump sum. Such awards usually range from 0-30% depending on the level of your involvement.

When it comes to dividing marital assets, New York operates under the principle of equitable distribution. Unlike community property states where assets are split 50/50, or common law states where separate property is protected, New York takes a nuanced approach, considering a variety of personal and financial factors before determining how to divide marital property and debt.

As an equitable distribution state, it’s essential to understand the definition of marital property in New York. Any assets acquired during the marriage are considered marital property, regardless of who earned it or whose name is on the title. This includes everything from real estate and cars to savings and investments.

But what about separate property? This includes assets acquired before the marriage, inherited or gifted property, and compensation for personal injuries. These assets are not subject to equitable distribution laws, which means they will remain in the possession of the person who acquired them. However, it’s worth noting that separate property can become marital property if it’s maintained through the use of marital funds or if it increases in value due to the contributions of both spouses.

Divorcing couples often have questions about what they are entitled to in a divorce and what equitable distribution means. Our equitable distribution attorneys are here to help you navigate the complexities of this process and secure a fair divorce settlement. Contact us today to learn more.

New York is not a “50/50” state when it comes to dividing property and debt during divorce. Instead, it operates under the principle of equitable distribution, where a judge will consider all financial and non-financial contributions to the marriage when determining how to divide property and debt in a fair and just manner. This means that each spouse will keep their separate property and will be awarded a percentage of the total value of marital property, taking into account not only assets but also liabilities and debts.

While preparing for a divorce, it’s natural to focus on how assets will be divided, but it’s important to remember that debts accumulated during a marriage must also be distributed. For example, debts linked to a specific asset, such as a mortgage or car loan, will typically stay with the asset and whoever keeps the asset will be responsible for the debt. Other unsecured debts, such as credit card debts, will be apportioned between the parties and hopefully discharged as part of the divorce agreement.

To protect yourself when it comes to debt allocation in a divorce, it’s important to gather and retain as much documentary evidence as possible regarding debts incurred during the marriage. This applies whether you claim a debt to be marital or if you intend to argue that you should not be held responsible for the debts incurred by your spouse.

At our NYC firm, we understand that equitable distribution in divorce doesn’t always result in an equal or fair division of property. That’s why it’s crucial to secure the help of a seasoned divorce lawyer who can help you navigate the complexities of New York divorce law and secure a fair settlement. With our expertise and experience, we will work tirelessly to protect your rights and interests throughout the divorce process.

How much does a divorce cost?

Divorce is a financial burden that can take a heavy toll on those going through it. The question of cost is likely one of the first that comes to mind for those considering divorce in New York. So, how much does a divorce cost in New York, you may ask?

The average cost of a divorce in New York is approximately $16,000. However, it’s essential to understand that the cost can vary significantly depending on the type of divorce. An uncontested divorce, for example, typically costs around $5,500 on average, while a contested divorce, also known as litigation, can cost a staggering $27,000.

When contemplating the costs associated with divorce, it’s important to consider various factors that can impact the overall expense. For instance, an uncontested divorce is generally less expensive than a contested divorce because there is no need to pay a divorce attorney or specialist to resolve conflicts. On the other hand, if you and your spouse have already legally separated and have a separation agreement in place, the process is known as a conversion divorce, which can also lower the cost.

Additionally, if your spouse fails to respond to the divorce proceedings, the divorce will result in a default judgment, also known as divorce in New York without a spouse’s signature. In this case, the cost remains relatively the same. The minimum filing fee for a divorce in New York is $335, but it can vary depending on the county where you reside and your specific needs.

It’s worth noting that paying just the court fee in a DIY divorce means you and your spouse will be responsible for filling out all the necessary paperwork, which can be a daunting task. To ease this process, many individuals opt to work with an online divorce service like Divorce.com to guide them through the process and help minimize the costs.

The cost of a contested divorce can be a daunting and unpredictable expense. However, understanding the factors that affect the cost can help you make informed decisions about your divorce proceedings.

One of the most significant factors that impact the cost of a contested divorce is whether you’re filing for a fault or no-fault divorce. In a fault divorce, one spouse alleges legal wrongdoing on the other spouse’s part, which they must then prove in court. This almost certainly requires the costly services of a divorce lawyer from a reputable family law firm, making the divorce process much more expensive.

Another important factor that affects the cost of a contested divorce is the method of dispute resolution that you and your spouse choose. Ideally, the two of you can work out your differences without the need for professional intervention, but if that’s not possible, your options include collaborative divorce, divorce mediation, and divorce litigation. Collaborative divorce is the most expensive, while divorce mediation is the most cost-effective.

However, the most important factor is to stay away from court battle if at all possible. Not only it can be expensive but also it can take a toll on your mental health and that of your children.

Ultimately, the cost of a contested divorce can vary greatly depending on the specific circumstances of your case. It’s important to consult with a reputable family law firm, and consider all of your options before making a decision.

What are the differences between a contested and an uncontested divorce?

When it comes to divorce, there are two main types: uncontested and contested. An uncontested divorce, also known as a Joint Petition for Divorce, is when both spouses agree on all the terms of the divorce. This type of divorce is accomplished by filing a joint petition and is often quicker, cheaper, and less stressful for both parties involved. On the other hand, a contested divorce is when the spouses cannot come to an agreement on certain issues, such as child custody, child support, division of assets, and alimony. This type of divorce requires the involvement of a judge to make the final decision, making it a lengthier and more emotionally taxing process.

It’s important to note that while a spouse cannot prevent the other from getting a divorce, they can prolong the process by refusing to agree to the terms of the divorce. This is where the services of a divorce lawyer come in handy. A lawyer can help you navigate the legal system and negotiate a settlement with your spouse, or if necessary, take the case to trial.

The average cost for an uncontested divorce is less than $1,500 and typically takes around 30 days. The process starts with one spouse hiring a lawyer to draft the necessary documents. Both parties review and agree to the terms, which must include agreements on child custody, child support, division of assets and debts, and alimony. If the judge approves the documents, a final divorce decree is entered.

In summary, an uncontested divorce is a simpler and more cost-effective option for couples who can agree on the terms of their divorce. While a contested divorce can be a more drawn-out and emotionally taxing process, it is often necessary for couples who cannot come to an agreement on certain issues.

A contested divorce is a complex and emotionally charged process that can take months, even years, to resolve. It is a legal battle that requires the expertise of a skilled divorce lawyer to navigate. The average cost of a contested divorce is $5,000 per spouse, and takes about 6 months. However, some contested divorces can cost $15,000 or more per spouse and take 12 months or longer.

The process begins when one spouse hires a divorce lawyer to file divorce documents with the court. These documents are then served to the other spouse, giving them notice of the divorce and the claims being made. The served spouse has 21 days to respond.

The first hearing in court, known as a case management conference, is usually held about 90 days after the documents are filed. At this hearing, the judge makes temporary decisions on custody, financial support, and other temporary orders. After the hearing, discovery is opened, which allows both sides to request documents and hold depositions to gather evidence for the upcoming trial.

At trial, documents are shared and witnesses testify before the judge. Family court is a judge trial, not a jury trial. After both attorneys have presented their evidence, the judge makes a final ruling on all the claims and files a final divorce decree.

It’s important to note that most contested divorce cases settle, with only 10% of divorce cases actually going to trial. Typically, cases are more likely to settle right before the case management conference, and right before trial, as the divorce attorneys and clients are preparing for the upcoming hearing, giving them a moment to assess the merits of their claims.

Can I get divorced if my spouse does not want to?

Ending a marriage can be a difficult and emotional process, but it’s important to remember that you have options and rights. Even if your spouse refuses to talk about a divorce or is unwilling to come to an agreement, the law in New York allows for a “no-fault” divorce based on irreconcilable differences. This means that you don’t have to prove that your spouse did something wrong to get a divorce.

However, it’s important to be aware that some spouses may view the decision to divorce as giving up control over the relationship. They may use threats or abuse to try to keep you in the marriage. But the law protects you from this kind of abuse and gives you the right to file for a divorce without having to make unreasonable concessions.

It’s also important to work with a family law attorney to ensure that you don’t give up any of your legal rights in exchange for getting your spouse to agree to a divorce. A lawyer can guide you through the process and help you make informed decisions.

If your spouse continues to refuse to cooperate, you may need to consider taking the case to court. This can be a costly and time-consuming process, but it may be necessary to get the divorce you want. A judge will decide how to proceed if your spouse does not respond to the court papers. Remember that you do not have to yield anything to the other spouse and the court will always protect your rights.

Divorces can be a tumultuous and unpredictable journey, even when both parties are in agreement. But when one spouse refuses to sign the divorce papers or employs other tactics to postpone the process, the already-difficult experience can become downright frustrating. So, what can you do when faced with an uncooperative spouse? Today, we delve into the various options available to you when your spouse refuses to sign the divorce decree.

Do I Need My Spouse’s Signature To Get Divorced?

Absolutely not! Your spouse’s signature is not a requirement for finalizing a divorce. Even if your spouse refuses to sign the papers, the process of divorce can still move forward. In fact, if one individual is pursuing a divorce, it will be granted regardless of whether the other party signs the papers or not. However, this does mean that the divorce will become a contested divorce.

Navigating A Divorce When Your Spouse Is Reluctant When one party wants a divorce, the other cannot legally block it from happening. Here are some steps you can take if your spouse is unwilling to accept the divorce:

  • Requesting A Default Judgement: If your spouse ignores your petition for divorce, your attorney can request that the court enter a default judgement. This means that the court will pass your petition after a certain period of time. In Texas, divorces can be finalized 60 days after the original petition for divorce is filed. If your spouse fails to sign the papers or respond to your petition, you can have a judge issue a judgement after this waiting period.
  • Mediation: If you believe that your issues can be resolved through mediation, that is also an option. Mediation is an alternative form of dispute resolution that helps you and your spouse navigate your divorce issues with the help of a neutral third party. It can be especially helpful if your spouse is in denial about the divorce and needs to talk it out before agreeing to it.
  • Personalized Legal Advice: It’s always a good idea to consult with an experienced divorce attorney to get personalized legal advice about your Texas divorce process.
  • Going To Trial: If your spouse still refuses to sign the divorce papers after mediation, you can choose to go to trial. This is the most expensive and time-consuming way to finalize a divorce, and it’s important to consult with an experienced divorce attorney before doing so. During the trial, the judge will resolve all issues in your divorce, including the division of marital assets and property, child custody, child support, and spousal support. At the hearing, the judge will issue a ruling based on what is stated in your divorce petition and then issue your divorce orders and judgements. If your spouse fails to respond or appear on this date, they give up the right to have any say in the divorce proceeding.

How long will I have to pay spousal support in New York

When it comes to determining the length of time one must pay spousal support, there is no hard and fast rule. The court takes into account a variety of factors to make its decision, and the length of the marriage is just one of them.

For marriages that were less than 15 years, the court may consider a duration of spousal support that ranges from 15% to 30% of the length of the marriage. For example, if a couple was married for 10 years, the duration of spousal support could be anywhere from 1.5 years to 3 years.

For marriages that were between 15 and 20 years, the court may consider a duration of spousal support that ranges from 30% to 40% of the length of the marriage. For example, if a couple was married for 18 years, the duration of spousal support could be anywhere from 5.4 years to 7.2 years.

And for marriages that were longer than 20 years, the court may consider a duration of spousal support that ranges from 35% to 40% of the length of the marriage. For example, if a couple was married for 25 years, the duration of spousal support could be anywhere from 8.75 years to 10 years.

It’s important to note that the court has discretion to consider other factors as well in determining how long spousal support should last. Some of the most important factors include the age and health of the parties, earning capacity, education and training expenses, and acts that inhibit earning capacity such as domestic violence. The court will also take into account the tax consequences, standard of living, and the equitable distribution of marital property. The court also considers the contributions and services of the payee as a spouse, parent, wage earner and homemaker, and how it impacted the career of the other party. Ultimately, the court’s decision will be based on what is fair and just for both parties.

What are different grounds for divorce

The legal grounds for divorce are often complex and vary from state to state. In New York, there are two distinct types of grounds for divorce: no-fault and fault-based.

No-fault divorce is a process in which either party can claim that the marriage has “broken down irretrievably” for a period of at least six months. This is known as “irreconcilable differences” in other states. It is important to note that a judgment of divorce will not be granted under this ground until specific issues are resolved, such as the equitable distribution of marital property, spousal and child support, and the custody and visitation of any minor children.

Fault-based grounds, on the other hand, are specific reasons that must be proven in order to file for divorce. These reasons include cruel and inhuman treatment, abandonment, imprisonment, adultery, and divorce after a legal separation agreement.

Cruel and inhuman treatment, for example, is defined as physical, verbal, or emotional abuse that endangers the physical or mental well-being of one party. The judge will require evidence of specific instances of cruelty that occurred in the last five years. Abandonment, on the other hand, is defined as one spouse leaving the other for a period of at least one year, or refusing to engage in sexual relations for at least one year.

Imprisonment of a spouse for three consecutive years, Adultery, and Divorce after a legal separation agreement are other fault-based grounds for divorce in New York. It’s important to understand that these grounds for divorce can be complex, and it’s best to consult a lawyer for guidance on the specific requirements for each.

What are the benefits of using mediation as a method for resolving divorce disputes?

As the turmoil of divorce threatens to consume your life, it’s essential to consider all your options. Traditional litigation is a costly and time-consuming process that can take a toll on your mental and emotional well-being. But there is another way. Mediation offers a unique opportunity for litigants to resolve their disputes in a different way. It’s a process that can save you time, money, and reduce stress, all while improving the overall well-being of all parties involved.

Family law mediation is a prime example of the benefits that mediation can offer. The cost savings alone are significant. Divorcing in New York can be an expensive ordeal, and I’ve seen countless litigants drain their savings in matrimonial disputes. But mediation can resolve these matters at a fraction of the cost.

Flexibility is another advantage of mediation. A judge’s calendar is often packed, and they determine the day and time of an appearance and how the case will be heard. Mediation, on the other hand, allows the parties and counsel to weigh in on scheduling and how the case is to be heard. This can include a hybrid of in-person and remote appearances.

The parties and counsel also choose the mediator, giving everyone a sense of control and confidence. The selection of a mediator is an essential first step towards resolving the case.

Mediation also offers significant time savings and continuity. When a case goes to trial, it can take weeks to resolve disputes over finances and children, prolonging one of the most painful events in a person’s life. Mediation, on the other hand, means less time away from work, children, and life’s real moments that matter.

Privacy is another crucial aspect of mediation. Divorce proceedings can be a stressful and anxious time, and courtrooms are open to the public. Mediation, on the other hand, takes place in a private, confidential, and more intimate setting, which can help to ease the stress of the experience.

Finally, mediation has been proven to have long-term results. A study conducted by the University of Virginia and published in The Journal of Consulting and Clinical Psychology on the effects of mediating versus litigating child custody disputes found that mediation encourages both parents to remain involved in their children’s lives after divorce without increasing co-parenting conflict. The nonresidential parent was more likely to be involved in co-parenting activities and, even after 12 years, was three times more likely to see their children weekly and four times more likely to talk to their children weekly than those parents who engaged in litigation.

A skilled mediator in a private setting has an excellent chance of bringing the parties to a resolution. Each party has a story to tell, and the mediator must listen and not be judgmental. The best resolution provides a foundation for future problem-solving. And, of course, the hope is that relationships, though ending, can be ended amicably. Mediation offers a chance to end the marriage with dignity, rather than tearing each other apart.

How does the mediation process differ from traditional divorce litigation?

As the weight of your decision to file for divorce bears down on you, the overwhelming task of dividing assets, calculating child support, and more can feel insurmountable. But it doesn’t have to be. Divorce mediation offers a way for couples to come to a mutually beneficial agreement without the need for court intervention.

Imagine sitting down with your estranged spouse in a safe, private environment, guided by a neutral mediator, to discuss the financial and family matters that need to be resolved. This option is perfect for couples who are on the same page about ending their marriage and want to cooperatively create a resolution together.

On the other hand, divorce litigation is better suited for couples who may not be able to come to terms amicably. This type of divorce is considered “contested,” as one spouse files a divorce complaint, asking the court to intervene and make decisions about the terms of the divorce. The judge will have the final say on matters like the division of assets, child custody and support, alimony, and more.

So, which route is best for you and your family? It ultimately depends on the level of cooperation you can get from your spouse. Divorce litigation puts the power in the hands of the court, leaving the outcome uncertain. Mediation, however, puts the power in your hands, allowing you and your spouse to come to an agreement with the guidance of an unbiased third party.

But that’s not all. Divorce mediation can also save you a significant amount of money. While litigation fees can cost tens of thousands of dollars and sometimes exceed $100,000 per spouse, mediation services typically cost around $3,000-6,000, which can be split between the couple.

Additionally, the time commitment for mediation is much less than that of litigation. A litigated divorce can take up to a year or more, whereas mediation typically takes 2-3 sessions over a few weeks.

So, as you weigh the pros and cons of divorce mediation vs. litigation, remember that there is a way to end your marriage in a respectful, cooperative manner. With the help of a neutral mediator, you and your spouse can make the important decisions that will shape your post-divorce life, without the uncertainty and high cost of litigation.

What are some common issues that can be resolved through mediation in a divorce case?

How do you prepare for a mediation session in a divorce case?

What are some common misconceptions about mediation in divorce cases?

How can mediation help to preserve relationships between divorcing parties and their children?

How does the cost of mediation compare to the cost of traditional divorce litigation?

How can mediation be used in conjunction with other alternative dispute resolution methods, such as collaborative divorce?

The thought of ending a marriage can be a heavy weight on one’s shoulders. The decision to pursue a divorce is not an easy one, and the task of navigating the legal process can be overwhelming. Not only do you want to protect your own financial security, but the idea of going head-to-head with your spouse in a public court of law can be daunting and costly with uncertain results.

At Spodek Law Group, we understand the importance of finding a legal path that aligns with your priorities and goals. Our team of experienced divorce attorneys know that the thought of a drawn-out, acrimonious divorce argued in a public court, with private details being documented in public records, is a nightmare for many people.

The good news is that you do not have to go to war to legally end your marriage in a reasonable fashion. You do not have to put your private family business out for public review in a court, before a judge and/or jury. You and your spouse can achieve an equitable distribution of property and a family-friendly child custody agreement on your own terms.

One such alternative to traditional divorce litigation is collaborative law. Collaborative law is a formal, out-of-court process that allows both parties to work with their attorneys individually to reach a full agreement and complete a dissolution. The collaborative process is the same as marriage dissolution, except that it requires that both parties be represented by an attorney and that both parties and their attorneys sign an agreement obligating them to resolve all the issues through negotiation and agreement, without filing a contested divorce.

At the law firm of Spodek Law Group, we have lawyers familiar with and experienced in all forms of family law alternative dispute resolution (ADR), including the collaborative law process. Our attorneys will work with you, your spouse, and your spouse’s attorney to reach a reasonable and suitable agreement.

In collaborative law, both sides and their attorneys enter into a written agreement to work together as a group to resolve all the issues and to terminate the marriage by dissolution. The parties and their attorneys schedule a series of four-way meetings during which disputed issues are discussed, information and documents are exchanged, and an agreement is worked out. If necessary, financial planners, accountants, counselors, and other experts may be involved to review information and offer assistance and suggestions on how to best resolve certain matters.

Collaborative divorce is almost always cheaper than litigation and significantly so. Although there can be more up-front costs because of the involvement of a full professional team, the total cost is considerably lower than if each party’s separate family law attorney spent months or even years preparing for trial. Collaborative divorce tends to be much faster than traditional divorce litigation and allows you to have control over the outcome of your case.

Don’t let the thought of a long, drawn-out, and costly divorce keep you from moving on with your life. At Spodek Law Group, we understand the importance of finding a legal path that aligns with your priorities and goals. Let us help you chart your path through alternative dispute resolution and achieve a resolution that works for you and your family.

Is a legal separation a good idea if you’re unsure about divorce?

Are you experiencing a troubled marriage but unsure if divorce is the right path for you? Legal separation may be a viable option to consider. As a top-rated NYC Divorce Lawyer, Todd Spodek explains, there are several reasons why a couple might choose to pursue a legal separation over divorce.

One reason may be rooted in religious beliefs, while another may be based on practical considerations such as maintaining insurance coverage. Additionally, if a couple is uncertain about ending their marriage but cannot cohabitate effectively, legal separation can provide a temporary solution.

However, it’s important to note that not all states have laws permitting legal separation. To understand the laws in your state, it’s advisable to schedule a consultation with a family law attorney.

A legal separation, much like a divorce, will address the distribution of assets and debts, as well as establish child custody, parenting time, and child support. Court hearings may be necessary if agreements cannot be reached between the spouses. The process of legal separation also includes preparing and filing the same types of documents required for divorce cases.

In some cases, one spouse may desire a legal separation while the other wants a divorce. In these situations, the court will likely approve proceeding with a divorce, even if irreconcilable differences are grounds for ending the marriage.

The ideal outcome in a legal separation case is when the spouses are able to negotiate and reach agreements on all issues, including property, debt, and children. The agreement is then presented to the court for approval. However, the court may reject the agreement if it violates the law or if one spouse coerced or exerted undue influence over the other.

Legal separation is a complex legal matter that is just as complicated as a divorce case. The only difference is that the formal, legal termination of the marriage does not occur. To navigate this process and understand your legal options, it’s recommended to hire a family law attorney. In most cases, the initial consultation is free of charge.

 

Can custody be addressed during our DVO hearing?

It is always in the best interest of the child for both parents to come to a mutual agreement regarding their child’s physical custody and other arrangements for their health and well-being. If there is no current court order for custody, both parents have equal rights to the physical and legal custody of any minor children.

Although the short answer is that it is possible for custody to be addressed at your domestic violence order hearing, each domestic violence case and custody case is unique and the answer can vary depending on many factors. Always seek the advice of a divorce attorney who understands the nature of your case and how the law can be applied.

Ultimately, a family court judge will decide legal custody. When ruling on custody, a judge does not favor one parent over another but looks at the family dynamic to determine the best interests of the child. There is no definitive legal definition of “best interests” but there are elements that help the judge decide where the child’s interest is best served such as:

  • What the child wants
    The older the child, the more vocal and less likely to fall victim to pressure from either parent in regards to their wishes. Judges are keen to signs of parental pressure
  • Whether the child has special needs
  • The physical and mental health of the parents
  • The parenting skills of each parent
  • The child’s relationship with members of the family
  • Which parent has been the main caregiver for the child
  • Whether there has been domestic violence in the family ¹

If you are in an abusive marriage and you are filing for divorce, the family court allows you to file an ex parte order. Ex parte is defined as a decision by a judge without requiring all parties to the matter to be present. It is usually granted based on information and testimony from the party filing for the order, and due to the party who is present also seeking an order of protection.
Ex parte orders are not usual and for the most part, are granted in extreme cases. You may fear immediate violence from your partner or fear a danger to your child(ren) or you may fear a parental kidnapping. The ex parte order is a temporary order. Once granted, the court will then notify the second party as quickly as possible in order to have them appear in court so the judge can hear their facts and information.

In 1980, Congress passed the Parental Kidnapping Prevention Act (PKPA). This Act addresses the many problems regarding state jurisdiction in regards to interstate child parental abduction. The key to the PKPA is to establish that the home state of the child is the standard jurisdiction and therefore takes precedence in criteria for establishing and legally addressing a parental abduction when a child has been taken across home state lines by one parent. ²

At the domestic violence order hearing, a judge will decide whether there is enough real evidence to issue protective orders. You can obtain a DVO in both Family and Criminal Court simultaneously. The judge may also order the custody of a child remain exclusively with the parent who is the victim, however, many elements make up the determining factors in each individual case.
If you feel you are in danger at any time, please contact 911, even if you have a protective order in place.

The National Domestic Violence Hotline, 800-799-SAFE (7233) is always free, available, and they provide both advice and assistance. It is always wise to contact a divorce law attorney for domestic violence custody issues.
[1] O.(2017). New York State Unified Court System. Retrieved from https://www.nycourts.gov/index.shtml
[2] N. (n.d.). New York State penal law: Custodial Interference. Retrieved from http://www.criminaljustice.ny.gov/missing/graphics/nyspenallaw-custodialinterference.pdf

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I was searching for a law firm with some power to help me deal with a warrant in New York . After 6 days I decided to go with Spodek Law Group. It helped that This law firm is well respected by not only the top law firms in New York , but the DA , Judge as well. I...

~Fonder Brandon

5 Stars
It was my good fortune to retain Spodek Law Group for representation for my legal needs. From the beginning, communication was prompt and thorough. Todd, Kenneth and Alex were the first people I worked with and they all made me feel comfortable and confident that the team was going to work hard for me. Everything was explained and any concerns...

~A G

5 Stars
After meeting with several law firms, I chose the Spodek Law Group not only for their professionalism and experience, but for the personal attention given to me right from the initial consultation. It is important to recognize how crucial having the right legal team is when faced with potentially life altering events that impact families and the lives of loved...

~George Cherubini

Spodek Law Group

White Glove Service

We Provide Superior Service, Excellent Results, At A Level Superior To Other Criminal Defense Law Firms. Regardless Of Where Your Case Is, Nationwide, We Can Help You.
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NYC

85 Broad St 30th Floor, New York, NY 10004

212-300-5196

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Los Angeles

611 S Catalina St Suite 222, Los Angeles, CA 90005

212-300-5196

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QUEENS

35-37 36th St, 2nd Floor Astoria, NY 11106

212-300-5196

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BROOKLYN

195 Montague St., 14th Floor, Brooklyn, NY 11201

212-300-5196

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