Timeline for Divorce in New York City
The family law firm of Brian D. Perskin & Associates, P.C. has been representing New York City residents in divorce cases since 1990. One of the most common questions our clients have is “How long will it take to get divorced?” The truth of the matter is, divorce takes time. While there is no specific time frame for a New York City family law action, a judge will not grant the parties a divorce for at least four months.
Be Wary of Scams
There are many companies that advertise quick divorces without your spouse’s consent. These businesses target vulnerable people going through a tough time by promising fast results for rock bottom prices. These companies commonly promise a 30-day turnaround for divorce. Supreme Courts in the New York City area are severely backlogged, and it is almost impossible to receive a signed Judgment of Divorce in one month. These centers often try to sell their clients expensive extras and have many hidden fees.
Remember: if it sounds too good to be true, then it probably is. Save yourself time, money, and future problems by contacting a legitimate New York City matrimonial and family law firm before filing for divorce.
Uncontested divorces are processed much faster than their contested counterparts; however, the completion timetable for uncontested family law actions can vary. Before final paperwork can be submitted for a judge’s review and approval, both parties will need to properly execute a number of documents. New York courts require the filing of uncontested divorce documents, and a complete list of these items can be found online. Divorces involving children require additional paperwork that outlines child support and custody.
In New York City, uncontested divorces will be granted about four to six months after all documents are correctly submitted. To ensure a speedy divorce, it is imperative that both parties sign all required paperwork as soon as possible after the Summons is filed and served.
When one party does not agree to a divorce or its terms, the action becomes contested. Contested divorces require a great deal of work, resulting in a longer time period until the case is finalized. Your lawyer will spend his or her time doing research, drafting and filing case documents, negotiating with opposing counsel, and preparing for multiple court appearances.
Contested divorces that involve custody issues require additional legal resources, such as Law Guardians and family therapists. Law Guardians are court appointed attorneys who represent a child throughout a divorce proceeding. Family therapists will conduct interviews with each parent and monitor their interactions with the child. The therapist will present their findings during court appearances, and the judge will take the therapist’s recommendations into consideration while determining a custody order.
It is impossible to provide an exact timeline for how long a contested divorce will take, as the exact process will vary on a case-by-case basis. Some contested cases will settle, while others will spend two years in court. For a better understanding, it is recommended that you consult with an experienced New York divorce attorney.
Discovery Process and Subpoenas
The discovery process is a major factor in determining the duration of your case. During discovery, both parties are required to produce financial documents, employment records, any other documentation related to their assets. In some instances, records will need to be subpoenaed. Once a Notice of Subpoena is filed with the court, it will be sent to the corresponding records custodian for processing. Unless is the judge sets forth a specific deadline, records custodians commonly request extensions in order to thoroughly prepare the requested documents.
Once all discovery production is received, the documents will be reviewed and forwarded to opposing counsel. Any information produced during the discovery phase of a contested divorce can be used in depositions and submitted as evidence in trial.
To ensure that your divorce is resolved within an appropriate time frame, you must be proactive and diligent. You should execute court documents in a timely manner, and send financial documents or proof of assets to your attorney prior to the discovery process. Additionally, it is imperative that you rearrange your schedule to ensure that you are present for each required court appearance. Adjournments will only delay your divorce.
In certain situations, it is possible to petition the courts for an expedited divorce. To do so, your attorney must prove that you meet specific statutory requirements for an expedited proceeding. Such requests are granted due to medical issues, or if one spouse is planning on getting remarried before the divorce is finalized. Drafting a motion to expedite a divorce is complicated, and will not be fruitful if attempted without proper representation.
New York City Divorce Experts
A surefire way to guarantee your divorce is processed as quickly as possible is to retain an experienced matrimonial attorney. The family law firm of Brian D. Perskin & Associates, P.C. has been representing New Yorkers in Supreme and Family Courts for over 20 years. Our extensive experience and deep understanding of the ins and outs of the New York City court system have resulted in expertly executed divorce settlements for our clients. For more information, contact our team at 718-875-7584 to schedule your free consultation.