Once you have decided to get a divorce there are several different options that exist to end your marriage. The options are divorce, legal separation and annulment.
Option 1: Divorce
If you decide to get a divorce, this means that there is a final settlement of all your property issues and other factors such as child custody, alimony, maintenance and the division of assets. In most cases, a divorce judgment is considered a final decree, with no ability for modification, unless certain circumstances present themselves. Commonly, the parts of the divorce settlement dealing with children can be modified later due to changing conditions. However, anything to do with property division will be highly difficult to modify once the divorce has been settled.
Option 2: Legal Separation
New York is a state that provides for legal separation, meaning that there is a decree which is somewhere in between an actual divorce and staying married. In these cases, the court will make the decisions about asset division, alimony and child support, but you will not actually be divorced at the end of the process.
Obtaining legal separation in New York
There are two ways to become legally separated from your spouse in New York.
The first way is that the two parties enter into a Separation Agreement. This agreement must contain certain language and be signed and acknowledged in a particular way in order to qualify as a Separation Agreement. The agreement should never be prepared by the parties on their own, as it needs to be properly and carefully drafted in order to accurately reflect the intentions and so that it can be enforceable in the future.
The second option is to obtain a Judgment of Separation. An action for separation proceeds in very much the same way as an action for divorce.
Option 3: Annulment
Legal annulment requires matrimonial action which declares a marriage as null and void. The two categories of annulment are marriages that are void at inception and those that can only be voided by a court judgment.
Examples of cases that warrant annulment:
- If either of the spouses in permanently and incurably incapable of having sexual intercourse
- Where both parties are not over the age of 18
- Where one party becomes incurably insane for five or more years
- Where consent to marry was obtained by fraud
To find out more about your New York Divorce options, contact the Law Offices of Brian D Perskin for further information and an initial consultation.