How do I start a divorce proceeding?
An action for divorce is started by filing a Summons or Summons and Complaint in the Supreme Court of the State of New York. Once the initial divorce paperwork is filed in court, it must be served personally on your spouse and an affidavit of personal service must be filed in court within 120 days.
Should I file my divorce in New York or somewhere else?
You can file for divorce in the state where you or your spouse resides. To file in New York, one of the following residence requirements must be met:
- You and your spouse were married in the state and either party is a resident when the divorce action is commenced and has been a resident for a continuous period of one year immediately preceding the divorce.
- You and your spouse have resided in this state as husband and wide and either party is a resident when the divorce action is commenced and has been a resident for a continuous period of one year immediately preceding the divorce.
- The ground for divorce occurred in this state and either party has been a resident for a continuous period of at least one year immediately preceding the divorce action.
- The ground for divorce occurred in this state and both parties are residents at the time of the divorce action.
- Either party has been a resident of this state for at least two years immediately preceding the start of the divorce action.
What do I need to do if I Have Children?
You will file your initial divorce paperwork and address all the issues regarding your children such as, but not limited to; custody arrangements, visitation and time-sharing, child support, and medical coverage.
How can I serve my spouse if we don’t live together?
We would need a photo of your spouse to identify and serve him or her with the initial divorce paperwork.
Who should file the divorce paperwork?
For uncontested divorces, the spouse who wishes to finalize the divorce files the divorce paperwork.
Can I change my name?
You can request to resume the use of your prior surname.