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New York Divorce & Finances

UPDATED: February 27, 2020

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Separating out joint finances during a divorce can be a headache. How is property divided? What are the tax consequences? Are there estate planning issues that need to be worked out? Will there be spousal support payments, and if so, how much and for how long? Following are laws specific to New York Divorce and Finances.

New York Property Division/Community Property/Debts:

New York is an equitable distribution state. As such, marital property will be distributed on terms considered to be fair (i.e. – NOT equal, a common misconception…). The court will consider, among other things, the contributions of each spouse to the marital estate, the total value of the properties of the parties, the economic circumstances of each party, any misconduct that may have occurred, the amount of spousal support awarded, etc. This system is also called common law or marital property and a determination will first be made as to what is “separate property,” and what is “marital property.” For an explanation of community property rules and the division of property in community property states, see Dividing Up Property in a Divorce: Community Property vs. Equitable Distribution.

New York Spousal Support:

There is no automatic obligation for either spouse to support the other in the event of a divorce. Where the court does grant spousal support (also called maintenance), it is done on a case-by-case basis and in consideration of many factors including:

  1. The financial resources of the party seeking maintenance,
  2. The time and resource input necessary for the party seeking maintenance to find appropriate employment and sufficient education/training for that employment,
  3. The established subjective standard of living during the marriage,
  4. Marriage duration,
  5. Physical and emotional condition of the party seeking maintenance, and
  6. The ability of the would-be payor spouse to meet his/her own needs while meeting those of the other spouse.

New York Divorce/Child Support/Child Custody Lawyers:
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