Nassau County Divorce Attorney
Serving Long Island & All Of The 5 Boroughs
Jason M. Barbara & Associates, P.C., our Nassau County
divorce attorneys have extensive experience handling complex family law and divorce matters.
Whether your matter involves separation, estrangement, alienation, accusations
of domestic violence, the existence of a prenuptial agreement, or a significant
number of assets in a contested divorce, we have the knowledge and tools
to aggressively protect your interests throughout the legal process.
Our goal is to learn about your concerns and establish a plan of action
that will help you reach a satisfactory divorce settlement. We can start
helping you today by answering questions such as:
What are the grounds for divorce?
Divorce cases are governed by New York's Domestic Relations Law. Until
2010, a party seeking divorce could only do so on specific grounds that
essentially put one party "at fault" for the breakdown of a
Some of the at-fault grounds for divorce include:
- Cruel and Inhuman Treatment
In 2010, the legislature added an additional ground for divorce, which
is the irretrievable breakdown of a relationship for a period of at least
six months. This new ground created a "no fault" basis for seeking divorce.
Nassau County courts will not finalize a divorce until specific issues
between the couple are resolved. Some of the issues that couples must
confront and decide upon include:
Are there alternatives to divorce?
Two of the most common alternatives to divorce are annulments and legal
Annulment is a marital dissolution process whereby the resulting legal
effect is that the marriage effectively never took place. Therefore, it
is only available under very limited circumstances, which include those
cases where the marriage could not have legally taken place for one reason
Some examples of this include:
- One of the parties was a minor
- One of the parties lacked the mental capacity to enter into the marriage
(such as in the case of mental illness)
- One of the parties was still legally married to a former spouse
- There is evidence of fraud or duress at the time the relevant party consented
to the marriage
Separation is a legal procedure which has the effect of solidifying the decision
that the parties will live their lives as separate individuals, but that
neither party may legally re-marry. A separation may be converted into
a divorce judgment by either party after at least one year has passed.
A judgment of separation also has specific pleading requirements, such
as allegations of abandonment, adultery, or the other spouse's imprisonment
for three years or more.
What will happen after my spouse is served with the summons?
If you initiate a divorce action by filing and serving a summons, your
current spouse will have to reply within 20 days. The reply will be served
through a notice of appearance to you, as the filer. With this action,
your spouse will appear for the divorce action, and you will be given
20 days to serve a verified complaint. If the divorce action is commenced
through the serving of a summons and verified complaint, your spouse will
be given 20 days to serve the answer to your complaint. The answer will
also include counterclaims.
What are the residency requirements for a New York divorce?
If you are estranged from your spouse and pursuing divorce in the state
of New York, you will need to meet the residency requirements. Any of
the following criteria will need to be met when filing for a New York divorce:
- You and your spouse were married in New York, and either of you has been
a resident for at least one continual year immediately before the commencement
of the divorce action
- You and your spouse have resided in the state as a married couple, and
either party has been a resident for a continuous period of at least one
year immediately before the start of the divorce action
- Grounds for divorce occurred in New York, and either spouse has been a
resident of the state for a continuous period of at least one year immediately
before the beginning of the divorce action
- Grounds for divorce occurred in New York, and both parties are residents
of the state at the time of the commencement of the divorce
- Either party has been a resident of New York for a continual period for
a minimum of two years immediately before the start of the action for divorce
Which type of property is subject to property distribution?
There are a number of determining factors that impact
property distribution. All property that is obtained by either or both parties during the course
of the marriage, prior to signing the separation agreement or prior to
the commencement of a divorce action, is considered marital property.
All marital property in the state is subject to equitable distribution
to be divided by the court in a fair, but not necessarily equal, fashion.
The property that will not be subject to equitable distribution includes
that which is considered separate property or any property protected in
a written agreement.
What can be included in a prenuptial or postnuptial agreement?
Not all issues that are discussed during divorce can be covered in a matrimonial
agreement, which includes
prenuptial and postnuptial agreements. It can include a contract to make a testamentary provision or a waiver
of rights to elect against a will. As far as property division, the provisions
for ownership, division, and distribution of both separate and marital
property can be discussed. Other terms of the marriage can also be included
and must be considered fair at the time of the making of the agreement.
Provisions for the custody, care, and support of children can be included,
but the best interest of the child will be the highest consideration at
the time of divorce.
Contact Our Team for a Free Consultation
Our firm will take the time to listen to your concerns, analyze your case, and
help you formulate a plan that meets all of your needs during the legal
process. Our Nassau County divorce lawyers can deal with the legal issues
of your divorce, help you protect your assets and your interests, and
deal with your spouse on your behalf.
At Jason M. Barbara & Associates, P.C., we know how New York divorce
procedures work and we know what you are entitled to during divorce. When
you retain our services, you have the benefit of our knowledge, our experience,
and our success handling divorce matters. For quality legal assistance
with your divorce,
contact us today!