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Family Law Attorney in New York City, New York

For many individuals in New York, matters involving domestic relationships — including divorce, alimony, marital agreement, property division, child custody, child support, and parenting time – are extremely delicate and may require some legal legwork. With sensitive emotions involved, understanding your available options is crucial to help you make intelligent decisions and avoid costly errors.

If you are considering making familial changes such as divorce, child custody, or marital agreement, it is vital that you consult with a compassionate New York State family law attorney immediately for reliable advocacy and detailed guidance. At the Law Office of Seth D. Schraier, P.C., I have the diligence, resources, and expertise to advise and guide clients in various family law-related matters.

As a skilled attorney, I can evaluate your unique circumstances and explore your possible legal options. Whether you want to file for divorce or need help establishing marital agreements, alimony arrangements, or parenting plans, I can offer you the personalized legal guidance and brilliant advocacy you need to navigate crucial decisions in your family legal issues and domestic relations matters.

My firm – the Law Office of Seth D. Schraier, P.C. – proudly serves clients in New York City, New York, and throughout New York City, including Manhattan, Brooklyn, and the Bronx.

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Divorce in New York

Divorce is the legal way to dissolve or end a marriage in New York. To file for divorce in New York, you must:

  • Meet the residency requirement, and

  • Have a legally acceptable reason ("ground") for the divorce.

Residency Requirement

Furthermore, you may file for divorce in New York if you meet one of the following residency requirements:

  • Your marriage ceremony occurred in New York, and you or your spouse has lived for at least one year in the state prior to filing.

  • You lived in New York as a married couple, and either spouse has lived in the state for at least one year.

  • The divorce ground occurred in New York, and either you or your spouse has lived in the state for at least one year before filing.

  • You or your spouse have been living in the state continuously for at least two years.

Grounds for Divorce

Also, New York allows both no-fault or fault divorces.

No-Fault Grounds

  • You and your spouse have been separated for at least one year.

  • Irretrievable breakdown in relationship for at least six months.

Fault Grounds

  • Abandonment for over a year

  • Cruel and inhuman treatment, such as mental and physical abuse

  • Imprisonment for over three years

  • Constructive abandonment

  • Adultery

A knowledgeable attorney can explore your available divorce options and walk you through the marital dissolution process.

Alimony

Alimony is a court-ordered payment made by the higher-earning spouse to the unemployed or lower-earning spouse during the divorce or for a period after the divorce. In a New York divorce case, the court will award spousal support if one spouse needs financial assistance and the other spouse can afford to pay. To determine the duration, amount, and type of alimony, the court will consider the following factors:

  • The length or duration of the marriage

  • The age, physical, and mental health of each spouse

  • The income and property available to each spouse

  • The current and future earning capacity of both spouses

  • The amount of time needed for the supported spouse to become self-supporting

  • The need for a spouse to incur training or education expenses

  • Whether the spouse's earning capacity will be affected by ongoing care of children or disabilities

  • Each spouse's contributions to the marriage

  • The ability of the paying spouse to meet his or her personal financial needs while still paying maintenance.

An experienced alimony attorney can evaluate your unique circumstances and offer you detailed guidance on how to establish or adjust spousal support agreements.

Asset Division

In a contested divorce, the New York court must divide marital property – all assets, property, and debts accrued during the couple's marriage – equitably and justly. To achieve equitable property distribution, the court may consider the following factors:

  • The length of the marriage

  • The income, age, physical, and mental health of each spouse

  • The income and property of each spouse at the time of the marriage or divorce

  • The potential earnings or future financial circumstances of each spouse

  • Each spouse's contribution to homemaking

  • The need for the custodial parent to own the marital home and its contents

  • Whether one spouse is receiving spousal maintenance.

  • Any other factor deemed necessary to achieve equitable distribution.

A knowledgeable property division attorney can enlighten you about the asset division process and fight compassionately to protect what is rightfully yours.

Children and Divorce

In New York, a parenting plan or custody order will determine which parent will get physical and legal custody, visitation schedule, child support amounts, and other matters concerning children in the divorce.

Child Custody

Child custody decisions are usually awarded based on the welfare and best interest of the child. The following factors may be considered to determine child custody in New York:

  • The reasonable preference of the child provided he or she is of sufficient age and mature enough to give an opinion

  • The relationship of the child with each parent

  • The physical and emotional health of each parent

  • The relationship of the child with the parent, extended family, and siblings

  • Each parent's ability to work together and communicate in a co-parenting relationship

  • Each parent's ability to meet the educational, emotional, and physical needs of their child

  • Each parent's willingness to facilitate a relationship with the other parent and their child

Child Support

The following factors may be considered to determine the amount of child support in New York:

  • The financial resources available to each parent

  • The non-monetary contributions made by the parent toward the child's care and wellbeing

  • The standard of living the child would have enjoyed if not for the divorce

  • The physical and emotional health of the child and any special needs

A skilled attorney can help calculate the amount of child support, protect your custody rights, and help navigate crucial decisions in your divorce.

Pre- and Postnuptial Agreements

In New York, engaged spouses or married couples can enter into a marital agreement to determine how their assets will be distributed in the event of a divorce, legal separation, or death of one spouse. A marital agreement entered into before the marriage is known as a prenuptial agreement, while a marital agreement entered into after getting married is known as a postnuptial agreement.

Additionally, both prenuptial and postnuptial agreements can help couples define expectations, protect their assets, finances, and children, provide financial security, and ultimately achieve peace of mind. A knowledgeable family law attorney can help craft a prenup or postnup that fits your unique needs and ensure that the marital agreement is valid and legally enforceable.

Family Law Attorney
Serving New York City, New York

If you're considering making changes to your family structure or if you need assistance in your family legal matters and relationship issues, contact my firm – the Law Office of Seth D. Schraier, P.C. – today to schedule a simple consultation. I can offer you the strong advocacy, support, and detailed legal guidance you need to make informed decisions. My firm is proud to serve clients in New York City, New York, and throughout New York City, including Manhattan, Brooklyn, and the Bronx.