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New York no-fault divorce is anything but easy. No one expects your spouse, for better or for worse, until death do you part, to just quit. Divorce is planning your future and equitable distribution of your marital property. Equitable means fair or relative equality not exactly equal. Equitable distribution is inventorying marital assets and debts and deciding how they will be allocated. The duration of your marriage is a factor in the distribution of your personal property and liabilities.

Distribution of Assets

A family law attorney or mediator can help you get your possessions from your home. Divorce lawyers can negotiate a division of property to benefit your entire family. Divorce lawyers can save your vehicles, home, and assets from creditors and help you plan for a successful future.

While you are in the throes of the dissolution of life as you know it, working with your ex-spouse agreeing on the division of your acquired possessions keeps you out of court, reduces your legal fees, and cuts your court costs. You and your ex-spouse must disposition your:

⦁ Business interests
⦁ Retirement funds
⦁ Real estate
⦁ Investments

What is marital property?

Marital property means property either you or your spouse or both of you acquired during your marriage. If your property increased or decreased in value during your marriage, the increase is marital money or the decrease is a marital liability. If you paid extra money on your mortgage to pay it off early, your additional payments on your principal is marital money. The equity in your family home and in your business is marital money. Each spouse’s financial contribution to the marriage determines who pays the mortgage and relative spending may determine who pays which credit card bills. Accrued retirement accounts, life insurance payments, pensions, and deferred compensation acquired during your marriage are also marital assets. Gifts exchanged by you and your spouse are marital property.

What is non-marital property?

Separate property includes gifts given or inherited by one spouse or the other from sources outside of the marriage. Income from non-marital properties is separate non-marital income. Your creditors should be paid from the sale of marital property. Each spouse’s earnings or contribution to the marital money is considered in the distribution of the property. The divorce court will exclude property and debt from court-ordered division upon a reasonable agreement between the parties.


Temporary alimony payments are a way to equitably divide resources. Alimony is awarded at the judge’s discretion. Alimony improves the lower socioeconomic spouse’s ability to obtain an education or train for an adequate job. Permanent alimony is paid only to low-income spouses who were always there for their family, housekeeping, raising children, and serving the spouse who supported her financially for many years.

Interim Orders

Interim alimony and partial property distribution orders may be entered upon a sworn motion by one of the parties to the divorce. Good cause for an interim order may be financial hardship or impending foreclosure on the marital home. The petition must demonstrate the need for an interim distribution of assets prior to the final divorce order. The interim order can provide much needed support to the lower income spouse or benefit a custodial parent. The interim distribution is later incorporated into the final divorce decree. Equitable distribution of marital assets reduces the inequity for the filing spouse and prejudice against the non-filing spouse. The judge may award interim attorney’s fees to either spouse.

Domestic Violence

If you’re a victim of domestic violence, our New York City divorce attorney can help you file an order of protection immediately against your spouse to keep you and your children safe.

If you have an order of protection against you for domestic violence, our New York City divorce attorney may be able to help you preserve your parental rights. If you regret the mistake you made when you assaulted your spouse, our family law attorney can help you preserve your business and your reputation. You have an obligation to provide financial support for your children. Our domestic violence attorney can help you negotiate a positive outcome for you, your wife, and children.

Spodek Law Group

Call the Spodek Law Group for a free initial consultation with our family law attorney in our multi-lingual New York City, Brooklyn, Bronx, Long Island, or Queens office. Our family law advocates have 40 years of experience advocating for clients in the process of dividing marital assets and liabilities in the best interest of all parties to the divorce. Our Martindale-Hubbell distinguished lawyer Lance Spodek’s legal team can help you negotiate a win-win solution for your small business, save your children’s family home, and relieve the ongoing stress and emotional turmoil of your divorce.

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