Seven Grounds for Divorce in New York

In order to divorce in New York, you must have a reason that is legally acceptable. In New York, there are seven grounds for divorce that are legally recognized and acceptable.  They are as follows::

  1. Irretrievable breakdown in the relationship for at least 6 months. This is commonly known as a no-fault divorce.  To utilize this ground for divorce, the marriage must be over for at least 6 months.  All martial issues related to debt, marital property, assets, any other economic issues, should be resolved.
  2. Cruel and Inhuman Treatment. This ground for divorce may require a judge to analyze specific acts of cruelty that occurred within the last five years of the marriage. It is important to note that arguments and disagreements, for example, do not fall under this ground for divorce in New York.  Cruel and inhumane treatment can cause the plaintiff undue harm physically or mentally, as well as cause dangerous and unsafe conditions should the spouses continue to live together.
  3. Abandonment. If a spouse abandons the other spouse for at least one year, they may be able to use this ground for divorce.  There are two types of abandonment: voluntarily abandonment (when the spouse leaves the home) or when the spouse refuses to have relations with the other spouse.  The latter is known as “constructive abandonment.”
  4. Improvement. If a spouse is imprisoned for 3 or more years, consecutively, the other spouse may use this as a ground for divorce. The spouse must have been sentenced to prison after the marriage commenced.
  5. Adultery. Adultery can be used as a ground for divorce if it occurred during the spouses’ marriage.  This may be difficult to prove since evidence from another person may be required.
  6. Divorce after a legal separation. If the divorcing spouses live separate for one year and have a valid separation agreement, they may use this as a ground for divorce.
  7. Divorce after a judgment of separation. This is a relatively uncommon ground for divorce. This ground may be utilized if the Supreme Court created a judgement of separation and the divorcing couple lived apart for one full year,

If you are considering a divorce, contact an experienced divorce attorney today.

If you need strong legal representation regarding matters of divorce, family law, and estate law, contact the Law Offices of Susan A. Kassel, P.C. to schedule a consultation today.