Unraveling the Unknown: A Guide to Divorce in Long Island

Divorce is rarely a simple process, and navigating legalities can feel overwhelming. If you're facing a divorce on Long Island, numerous questions likely cloud your mind. This comprehensive guide aims to shed light on some of the most common concerns.

The Dreaded Timeline: How Long Does a Divorce Take?

Unfortunately, there's no one-size-fits-all answer. The duration of a Long Island divorce hinges on several factors, including:

  • Contested vs. Uncontested: An uncontested divorce, where both spouses agree on all terms (division of assets, child custody, etc.), can be finalized in as little as six weeks. Conversely, a contested divorce involving disagreements requires court appearances and can take twelve to eighteen months on average.
  • Complexity of Issues: Divorces involving significant assets, intricate child custody arrangements, or spousal maintenance requests generally take longer to resolve.
  • Court Backlog: The court's workload can impact processing times.

Staying Put: Can I Remain in the Marital Home During the Divorce?

There's no guaranteed answer, but the judge considers several factors:

  • Ownership of the House: If one spouse solely owns the home, they might have a stronger claim to reside there.
  • Children Involved: The court prioritizes the children's well-being and may allow them to stay in the familiar environment.
  • Financial Standing: A spouse experiencing financial hardship might be granted temporary residency until securing alternative housing.

Understanding Child Support:

New York follows a statutory guideline for child support calculations. The court considers factors like:

  • Income of both parents
  • Number of children
  • Childcare costs
  • Health insurance expenses

Maintenance (Spousal Support):

Spousal maintenance (alimony) is awarded based on factors like:

  • Length of the marriage
  • Income disparity between spouses
  • Standard of living during the marriage
  • Age and health of each spouse
  • Child custody arrangements

Children's Wishes: Who Gets to Decide Where They Live?

In New York, children above a certain age (usually 12 or older) might be given the opportunity to express their preference regarding which parent they wish to reside with. However, the judge ultimately makes the decision based on the child's best interests, considering factors like:

  • Relationship with each parent
  • Stability of the living environment
  • Child's emotional and physical needs

Shouldering the Burden: Does My Spouse Owe My Legal Fees?

In some cases, the court may order one spouse to contribute towards the other's legal fees, particularly when there's a significant income disparity.

Trial or Settlement?

Most divorces settle outside of court through negotiation or mediation. Trials become necessary when disagreements persist.

Keeping Your Inheritance:

Generally, assets inherited during the marriage are considered separate property and remain with the inheriting spouse. However, if the inheritance was commingled with marital funds, its classification might become more complex.

The Elusive Click: Can I File for Divorce Online in NY?

Currently, New York doesn't allow online divorce filings. You'll need to file the necessary paperwork with the Supreme Court in the county where you or your spouse resides.

The Quickest Route:

Uncontested divorces with minimal assets and no children are the fastest to finalize. Consulting an experienced divorce attorney can significantly streamline the process.

Important Note: This blog post provides a general overview and shouldn't be construed as legal advice. Every divorce is unique, and consulting with a qualified Long Island divorce attorney is crucial to navigate your specific situation effectively.

Don't Let Divorce Confuse You: A Simple Guide for Long Island

Going through a divorce can be stressful, and all the legal stuff can feel scary. But don't worry, we're here to help! This guide will answer some of the most common questions people in Long Island have about divorce.

Think of it like this:

Imagine you're packing a suitcase. A divorce is like dividing up the things in that suitcase – your house, money, and if you have kids, figuring out where they'll stay. The goal is to make a fair split for everyone involved.

Here's what people usually want to know:

  • Can I stay in the house while the divorce happens? There's no right or wrong answer. The judge will look at who owns the house, if you have kids, and how much money each of you has.

  • How much child support will I have to pay? New York uses a special rule to figure this out. It considers how much money each parent makes, how many kids you have, and how much childcare costs.

  • Will I get money from my spouse after the divorce (alimony)? Maybe. The judge will consider how long you were married, how much money each of you makes, and if you have kids.

  • Do my kids get to decide where they live? If your kids are older (usually teenagers), they might get to tell the judge where they'd prefer to live. But in the end, the judge will decide what's best for them.

  • Will my spouse have to pay for my lawyer? Sometimes, if one of you makes a lot more money than the other, the judge might order them to help pay for your lawyer.

  • Will my case go to court? Most divorces don't go to court. Lawyers can usually talk things out and reach an agreement. Court happens if you can't agree on something.

  • If I got money during the marriage (inheritance), do I keep it? Usually, yes! But if you mixed that money with other money you shared as a couple, things might get a little more complicated.

  • Can I file for divorce online in New York?
    Not yet! You'll need to fill out papers and take them to the courthouse.

  • How fast can a divorce happen? The fastest divorces are when you and your spouse agree on everything (like how to split things up) and have no kids. A lawyer can help things move along smoothly.

Important Note: This information is just to give you a general idea. Every divorce is different. The best thing to do is talk to a lawyer who knows the laws in Long Island and can help you with your specific situation.


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Service Type
Divorce Lawyer, Matrimonial Law, Child Custody and Visitation
Provider name
Robert G. Frank ESQ, 98-20 Metropolitan Ave, Forest Hills,New York-11375,
Telephone: 718.268.2152
Mobile: 718.634.5080
NY Metro Area including all NYC, Long Island and Westchester