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Queens Law Firm Explains How to File for Divorce in New York

Respected attorneys handle the details of your divorce filing

Filing for divorce in New York State requires many steps that must be completed at the appropriate time and in the proper order. Each step offers potential pitfalls for the inexperienced lawyer — and potential advantages for the savvy attorney. The veteran divorce attorneys at Sager Gellerman Eisner Attorneys at Law guide you through the process seamlessly and develop strategies that accomplish your goals. When you are involved in a divorce, make sure you have the top matrimonial attorney in Queens on your side.

How to file for divorce in New York State

All New York State divorce cases begin in the same way:

  • The complaint — Your divorce case starts when you (the plaintiff) and your attorney file a summons and complaint. The summons formally notifies your spouse (the defendant) of the divorce case. The complaint sets out the details of your divorce case, including the grounds as well as your requests as to custody, support and other issues. A process server hand-delivers the summons and complaint to your spouse.
  • The answer — Your spouse’s response depends on whether you initially served both the summons and complaint or just the summons. If the summons is filed with the complaint, the defendant has 20 days to answer the complaint. If the summons was served without the complaint, the defendant has 20 days to respond with a Notice of Appearance. Once the defendant files the Notice of Appearance, the plaintiff has 20 days to serve the defendant with the complaint. In either case, the defendant’s response may include counterclaims against the plaintiff, who has 20 days to respond to the counterclaims.

What happens next?

Once you have filed for divorce and your spouse has responded, you likely are hoping for a fast divorce. Your divorce case, however, has only just begun. Between this point and a final divorce order, there will be numerous meetings, settlement negotiations, hearings and possibly a trial. These efforts can take from one to three years in a contested divorce case when support, custody, property and other issues are in dispute. An uncontested divorce, however, can be concluded in as little as 60 days.

Let our New York State attorneys manage your divorce

The experienced attorneys at Sager Gellerman Eisner Attorneys at Law move your divorce case as quickly as possible. You can reach us through our online contact form or call us at 347.625.1038 for a consultation. From our offices in Queens and Forest Hills, we serve clients in Nassau and Queens Counties and the New York City boroughs of Manhattan, Queens and Brooklyn. We are particularly sensitive to the issues surrounding divorces involving professionals and high-net-worth individuals.