Legally separated 15+ yrs – How much $ to divorce uncontested?

I have a question about filing for divorce after years of legal sepration. The parties involved have been separated for more than 15 years. The one child they had is no longer a minor (24 yrs old) and no property is shared (home, cars, etc.). They have both moved on to new relationships but have never completed the divorce process. How much would it cost to get an uncontested divorce granted in upstate NY (Montgomery County)? Husband lives in CT, wife lives in NY.

Asked on June 29, 2009 under Family Law, Connecticut


M.T.G., Member, New York Bar / FreeAdvice Contributing Attorney

Answered 11 years ago | Contributor

Was the legal separation entered in to in New York?  In New York, A legal separation is established one of two ways:  One, when the parties separate and either a court rules on the division of property, alimony, child support, child custody, and visitation or the parties negotiate and execute a Separation Agreement.  In addition, certain employment and medical benefits are preserved by separating rather than divorcing, even though deductibles and catastrophic health care coverage may be affected.  The agreement must also be filed at least one year before you file for divorce.  You can file one year and one day after filing the agreement.  this is the New York version of a "no fault" divorce.

Two is a Judgement of Separation obtained by one of the parties, gotten in a way similar to starting an action for divorce.  Divorce is not automatic after a year following the judgment of separation. You have to then file for divorce and the grounds listed in the filing of the Judgement of Separation are considered.

If you have none of the above, then you need to consider filing an uncontested divorce based upon one of the grounds listed in New York, assuming all is correct above and both parties agree.  The cost for this varies from attorney to attorney.  There are also filing fees.  How long it takes depends on if it is truly uncontested, the court calendars, etc.  No definite times can be given. Seek legal counsel in your area and try and go with your spouse to move things along.

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