I live in NY. I have had a legal separation document that has been in affect and followed faithfully for 5 years.

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I live in NY. I have had a legal separation document that has been in affect and followed faithfully for 5 years.

I want a divorce ASAP now as I have met some one. I understand that it is fast as we have had a legal separation. How long would it take to move it from legal separation to an actual divorce? Thank You.

Asked on May 27, 2009 under Family Law, New York

Answers:

S.J.H., Member, New York Bar / FreeAdvice Contributing Attorney

Answered 12 years ago | Contributor

Since you have a filed separation agreement you can then file for divorce in that county. If you and your spouse are amicable, you can download the uncontested divorce packet forms off the internet or get the packet from the Court in which you reside.  You merely fill out the forms and you and your spouse then sign. You pay the appropriate fees which total $370 and then depending on the county should be divorced within 2-6 months. In Nassau and Suffolk County you are probably looking at more like 6 months. If your spouse is not agreebale to singing the papers there will be a slight delay because you then have to have him/her served, wait 20 days for a response and then if there is no response, you have to seek a default which will be granted but may take some time depending on the County. In the City, this requires a court appearance while on the Island and upstate it is merely submission of papers.  

B. B., Member, New Jersey Bar / FreeAdvice Contributing Attorney

Answered 12 years ago | Contributor

The answer to your question depends on a few things, including the backlog of cases in the court you'll be going through, because that can vary quite a bit from one county to the next.  It will also depend on whether you get the paperwork done the right way the first time -- because if there are mistakes that have to be fixed, it can easily be two or three weeks between the time you send in the papers with mistakes, and when you hear back from the court about the problem.

A lawyer in your area, who works with the court on a regular basis, can give you a more accurate read on how long this will take -- and he or she can make sure all the papers are done right the first time.  One place to look for an attorney who can help you is our website, http://attorneypages.com


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