Zimmer, Mathiesen & Associates
No-Fault Divorce Attorneys in Suffolk County
Is No-Fault Divorce Right For You?
A new law went into effect in October 2010 which drastically changed the grounds for divorce in New York State. Under Domestic Relations Law 170(7), New York permits a divorce to be granted based on the fact that the marital relationship “irretrievably broke down” for a period of at least six months immediately prior to the commencement of the divorce action. This new law permits an individual to commence a divorce action solely based on the fact that the relationship between the husband and wife has broken down irretrievably so as to render it improper for the parties to cohabit as husband and wife.
In essence, this means that for the first time in New York State one party does not necessarily need to be deemed at “fault” for the deterioration of the marriage. Pursuant to New York State law, the original fault-based grounds such as adultery, abandonment, cruel and inhuman treatment, and imprisonment still in effect, but now they are not the only grounds available for a spouse seeking to end a marriage. In fact, most Courts will not even entertain a divorce in New York State under any of the “fault” grounds anymore. This is due to the fact that proceeding under “fault” typically causes the other spouse to contest the grounds which may significantly delay the divorce proceedings unnecessarily.
In order to help you understand the implications and effects of New York State’s No-Fault Divorce Laws, please give the divorce lawyers at Zimmer, Mathiesen & Associates a call at 631-493-0278 and we will be happy to arrange a free consultation to answer all questions you may have regarding the new no-fault divorce laws.
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What You Should Know About No-Fault Divorce in New York
No-fault divorce is a simple solution which permits either spouse to commence a divorce action without having to accuse the other spouse in court of adultery, abandonment, imprisonment, or cruelty which avoids unnecessary time and expense investigating issues which ultimately only prolong litigation and deter settlement between the parties. Regardless of the reason for the deterioration of the marriage, it is more important to focus on the actual settlement terms such as custody of the minor children of the marriage, child support, spousal maintenance, and equitable distribution of marital assets.
Although a divorce may now be obtained in New York without requiring that one party was “at fault,”there are many other complex factors that must be considered and resolved in each case. If you and your spouse have children, issues of custody, visitation, and child support must be resolved prior to obtaining a divorce. Additionally, you and your spouse must come to an agreement regarding spousal maintenance and the distribution of any and all marital assets and debts. This can become a bit complex when you and/or your spouse have significant assets such as real estate, own a business, and have retirement accounts such as deferred compensation plans, 401k plans, or pensions.
At the same time the no-fault divorce law was enacted, the Legislature also passed laws affecting child support, spousal maintenance, and the payment of counsel fees. These new laws drastically affect how matrimonial cases are handled in New York State Courts. In some instances, the spouse with the larger income also known as the “monied spouse” is required to pay temporary maintenance to the non-monied spouse. Another aspect of these new laws is that in some cases the monied spouse may be responsible for a portion of the other spouse’s attorney fees in an effort to balance the financial disparities between the parties.
It is important to utilize the experienced divorce attorneys at Zimmer, Mathiesen and Associates in order to ensure that you receive all of the money that you are entitled to under New York State law. If your husband or wife is the monied spouse, our attorneys will work hard to make sure that you receive temporary and long term spousal maintenance and are awarded the appropriate amount of counsel fees.
New York State affects everyone differently. The divorce attorneys at Zimmer, Mathiesen & Associates have exclusively practiced in the matrimonial and family law field for more than twenty-five years. These experienced attorneys have handled hundreds of no-fault cases and are well-versed in handling all of the complex and sensitive issues that arise in this field.
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Todd’s knowledge of the law, combined with his tough yet compassionate approach helped me through the most difficult time in my life. Todd and his staff were always attentive and professional and helped to guide me through the process. I was able to walk away from my divorce with what was most important to me, all thanks to Todd. I highly recommend Todd J. Zimmer & Associates.