New York child custody, Manhattan child custody, Brooklyn child custody Lawyer
Divorce Lawyer. New York child custody, Manhattan child custody, Brooklyn child custody Lawyer.
Divorce Lawyer. New York child custody, Manhattan child custody, Brooklyn child custody Lawyer.

Articles on New York Divorce Law

Service of Process of your Divorce or Child Custody Case
April 11, 2017

How a Custody case or Divorce Case gets Served-not intended as legal advice for information purposed only

There are strict rules you must comply with once you file a complaint for divorce or custody.

In New York, you have 120 days to serve the divorce action.

After that the case could be dismissed.

Your papers must be served in person.

If you cannot find the Defendant and they are avoiding service by hiding, you then need to take extra steps.

First get an Affidavit from the process server that he attempted service multiple times,

Next sign an Affidavit that you mailed the paperwork to the Defendant by regular mail and took other steps to try to locate him

Next, prepare a proposed exparte order and bring it to a judge asking for permission to serve by publication.

If you convince the Judge that you did your due diligence the Court might give you an Order permitting you to publish the Summons in the newspaper.

If you get the Order of course get the Affidavit of Service from the News Paper.

Then you can ask for intervention by the court to move your case forward.


It is highly recommended that you do not try this yourself-rather hire an attorney to do it for you.

It is a complex procedure!


Law Offices of Lisa Beth Older
65 Broadway Suite 706
New York, NY 10006
Phone 212-786-0901
Fax 212-786-3449



Plan for the Financial Aspects of your DIVORCE IN NEW YORK
April 10, 2017

Put together a good legal team that works with financial planners in your New York Divorce case.   It will make all the difference in the world, especially if you are a high net worth litigant. A collaborative approach to divorce can make the martial assets go far when you are envisioning equitable distribution. 

For instance, you must plan for the insurance needs for your children or spouse, especially if one or the other spouse lacks a job that provides for health insurance that covers the children. Additional insurance may be needed if there are obligations envisioned for child support, spousal support and life insurance requirements that are often found in a Separation Agreement or Stipulation of Settlement. In the event that you cannot afford a financial planner, at least consult with one.  Below are a few tips to consider. 

Before you get a divorce gather as many documents you can such as year-end statements from banks and stock accounts.  Also gather credit card statements as the court will likely require you to exchange them in your divorce action. Also put those documents in a safety deposit box. The more you know about your family finances the more you will gain.  You do not want to find yourself in a position of having to hunt them down after the divorce action is underway as it is expensive to subpoena them. 

Also, be aware of your credit score. You can get a free credit report from, Know what you owe and know what your spouse owes as the court will likely split debts between the parties.  You would be surprised what you can find on a credit card statement, such as items of marital waste such as gifts to girlfriends or excessive spending.

Be aware of possible safety deposit boxes as spouses often hid cash and jewelry in them when they face a divorce.  You can ask your lawyer to put a freeze on them so your spouse does not have access to it.

Try to get a hold of as many tax returns as you possibly can. You can normally order them from the IRS or get them from the family accountant who prepared your tax returns jointly.  You are entitled to them and the court will likely need them to make financial determinations on your divorce case.

I hope you found this article helpful!

What can happen in a Divorce in New York if you purchased a home during the marriage with your savings and then put the deed in your you and your spouse’s name?
March 31, 2017

I always advise my clients when they seek my help drafting a prenuptial agreement to keep their property separate.   So, what happens if you have $100,000 in your account before you marry, but then get married and use that $100,000 to buy a home, putting your spouse’s name on the deed as a joint tenant?

Well, unless you can show the court that you never intended it to be a gift there is a chance the court will deem the property that you bought with your own money as marital property subject to distribution between both parties.   In other words, a court could (or maybe not) rule that you gifted away the $100,000,00 if during divorce you cannot show the Court that the $100,000.00 can be traced back to your separate bank account.  This has been recently illustrated in a case entitled IACONO v. IACONO (App Div, 2nd Dep’t) In that case the husband claimed he used his own money earned before the marriage to purchase the marital residence.  The plaintiff claimed that his $105,000 from the sale of separate property was used to purchase the parties' marital home held jointly. The higher court held that the husband’s $105,000 was converted into marital property because the husband failed to establish with clear and convincing evidence the specific amount of money that he had before the marriage and did not show that he comingled his funds with his wife for convenience purposes only. The lesson to be learned in New York Divorce cases is to try to keep your savings and assets that you had before the marriage separate from that of your spouse.

Online Calculator to Estimate your Spousal or Child Support In a NY Divorce Case
March 27, 2017

Click  the button below to see how your child support and spousal support will be calculated for purposes of a divorce in New York .

NYS Online Calculator

Note that your case has to be settled first before you can use this calculator.

What Happens to the Marital Co-Op or Condo in a Divorce Action?
March 26, 2017

If you have children you can ask the court for what is called post judgment exclusive occupancy of the marital residence. Or, after a divorce a Court can award one or the other parties the marital apartment, they can require on spouse to buy out the other spouse’s interests in the apartment or they can order a sale.  Refinancing may become an issue such that the person who wants to keep the apartment must be able to have credit sufficient to refinance it and buy the other spouse out of the apartment. 

Another issue is that the cooperative board will look to see if they think the single parent can afford to continue to reside in the apartment. This becomes tricky and should be looked into in any case where equitable distribution of the marital residence is at issue.  The Board could also make the single party sell the property if it is deemed that they cannot afford it and withdraw their prior approval. So before taking the apartment in a divorce settlement check with the coop board to learn more about their rules as to occupancy. If a limited equity apartment is at stake and you are both shareholders you should strongly consider hiring an attorney acquainted with limited equity coops. In some coops, a term of absence from the apartment might cause the coop board to demand that you sell the shares back to them.

Not legal advice-for information purposes only

March 24, 2017

Although tardiness is most times excusable, a recent case by the New York Appellate Division shows what can happen on a lower court level if a litigant is perpetually late.  In the case of Matter of Thomas T. v. Luba R., 2017 N.Y. Slip Op. 01870, 2nd Dept 3-15-17 the lower Court issued an Order of Protection against the litigant who was only minimally late.   Although the higher court reversed the finding, it was only after a lot of litigation in the higher court.

So, what can we learn from this case?  We learn that if a litigant regularly and willfully appears late in court, or fails to appear, a court can rule against them.

Avoid being late. Give yourself an extra hour to be on time in court.  It will save you hours of anxiety and anguish and the Court will appreciate your professionalism and the respect shown to the court.