Common Questions About New York Divorce

Q: If neither party commits adultery or is physically abusive, how can you file for divorce in the state of New York?

A: The state of New York does not have "no fault" divorce. However, if you and your spouse have lived "separate and apart" for a year or more and have a legal separation agreement, you can move forward with a divorce without having to claim abuse, abandonment or infidelity.

Q: Do both parties have to agree to get a divorce?

A: No, one person can make the decision, communicate it to the other person and take action to separate.

Q: What constitutes proof of living "separate and apart" for a year or more?

A: You must provide evidence of living separately. Consider:

  • When did you stop socializing together as a couple?
  • Did you stop taking family vacations together?
  • Did you separate your finances?
  • Did you file separate tax returns?

The date of separation can be important when it comes to decisions about property division. It is one of the issues that often come up in contested divorce cases so it's best to be as clear as possible.

Q: What is a legal separation agreement?

A: If you are going to live apart, we petition the court for a legal separation agreement. A separation agreement covers many of the same issues that will be covered in a divorce, such as, who will live in the family home, child custody, and temporary spousal support. A legal separation agreement may or may not form the basis of a final divorce agreement.

Q: What are the residency requirements for a divorce in New York?

A: You can file for divorce in New York if:

  • You were married in New York and have lived here continuously for one year.
  • One of you has lived in New York for a period of one year while you were married.
  • You are divorcing because of abuse, infidelity or abandonment which occurred while you lived in New York, and you both live here or one of you has lived here more than one year.
  • One of you has lived here more than two years

Contact a New York Divorce Lawyer at 888-337-2679

To learn more about New York divorce law and how we can help you resolve a contested divorce or finalize an uncontested divorce, contact us at 888-337-2679 or by e-mail. At the Law Office of Schachter, P.C., divorce lawyer David B. Schachter and the members of our staff can work with you to seek a positive outcome to your case.