How To Tell You Have Enough Cruelty to Get Divorced in NYC

Divorce on the grounds of cruel and inhuman treatment can be a complex and emotionally taxing process. In New York, proving this claim requires demonstrating that the spouse’s behavior was detrimental to one’s physical or mental health to the extent that continued cohabitation became unsafe or improper. Attorney Brian D. Perskin, a seasoned divorce lawyer, sheds light on the intricacies of establishing such claims and navigating the high thresholds set by New York courts.

Understanding Cruel and Inhuman Treatment

Cruel and inhuman treatment may include physical violence, threats, persistent verbal abuse, or any conduct that endangers the mental or physical well-being of the plaintiff to such an extent that it is unsafe or improper for them to continue living with the defendant. The severity and frequency of the conduct are crucial factors in these cases.

Legal Thresholds in New York

According to Brian D. Perskin, “The burden of proof in cases of cruel and inhuman treatment is particularly high in New York. Not only must the conduct be sufficiently severe, but it must also directly impact the plaintiff’s physical or mental health in a way that makes living together unbearable.” This standard underscores the necessity of presenting a robust case with clear, consistent evidence.

Proving Your Case: What You Need

To establish a case for divorce based on cruel and inhuman treatment, you need:

  • Detailed Documentation: Keep a record of all instances of abuse, including dates, times, and descriptions of each event.
  • Witness Testimony: Corroborating statements from witnesses can strengthen your case, showing a pattern of behavior.
  • Medical Records: If applicable, medical records documenting injuries or mental health issues related to the abuse can be compelling evidence.
  • Professional Evaluations: Psychological evaluations that attest to the mental health impact of the treatment you’ve endured can be influential.

It’s important to collect as much evidence as possible to substantiate your claims. Without concrete proof, these cases can be challenging to win given the subjective nature of what constitutes “enough” cruelty to warrant the dissolution of marriage under this ground.

How Much Cruelty is Enough?

The determination of “how much is enough” depends on the specifics of each case. In New York, a single incident may suffice if it is extremely severe, but more often, a pattern of behavior is necessary to meet the legal standard. “Each case is unique, and what might be sufficient in one scenario could be insufficient in another. It’s about the impact on the individual and the sustainability of the marital relationship,” explains Perskin.

List of Key Considerations:

  • Severity of the abuse.
  • Frequency and duration of the abusive conduct.
  • Direct impact on the plaintiff’s physical or mental health.
  • Evidence of the infeasibility of continued cohabitation.

The Case of Carol v. Jerome Gross

In a divorce case from New York County, the Supreme Court originally granted the plaintiff, Carol Gross, a divorce from her husband based on claims of cruel and inhuman treatment. However, this decision was later reversed by an appellate court which found the evidence provided insufficient to meet the high standards required for such a claim, especially considering the long duration of their 37-year marriage.

Carol testified that her husband had physically forced himself on her and had other instances of unwanted physical contact, but she admitted to not having sustained any injuries from these incidents. The appellate court noted that while her husband’s behavior might have been offensive, there was no solid proof that it adversely affected Carol’s physical or mental health to a degree that would make cohabitation unsafe or improper.

The evidence showed that despite the alleged mistreatment, the couple continued to live together and maintained a seemingly normal social life, which included dining together and attending social functions. This, coupled with the lack of any physical or mental harm evidence, led to the conclusion that Carol’s claims did not rise to the level of cruel and inhuman treatment required by law to grant a divorce on those grounds. The complaint was dismissed, and the judgment for divorce was reversed without costs.

Hiring a New York City Divorce Attorney

Navigating a divorce on the grounds of cruel and inhuman treatment requires a deep understanding of family law and a compassionate approach. At Brian D. Perskin and Associates, we are committed to providing our clients with the professional guidance and representation needed to navigate these challenging cases. Our firm understands the sensitive nature of such matters and works diligently to ensure that your rights and well-being are protected throughout the process.

If you believe you are a victim of cruel and inhuman treatment and are considering a divorce in New York, contact Brian D. Perskin and Associates today. Let us help you build a strong case and achieve the justice and peace you deserve. Visit our website or call us to schedule a consultation and start your journey toward a new beginning.

Contact us at 866-926-5655 today to get expert-guided legal representation.

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