NY and No-Fault Divorce

Below is a Letter to the Editor that Professor Kohm sent the NYTimes in response to the article titled, "Chief Judge Plans Center to Ease Divorce Process" published February 27, 2007, by Danny Hakim. Click here to read the article.

"Your article on New York's divorce laws highlighting Judge Kaye's newly established Collaborative Law center in the city shows the importance of finding alternatives to litigation for troubled couples and their families. Your review of New York's domestic relations law, however, was inaccurate. Indeed, New York does have a no-fault divorce avenue, as does every state in the nation. New York's law stands apart though because it requires a bi-lateral agreement between the parties who have lived separate and apart from each other by a written agreement (legal separation) which has been in place for one year.
"The beauty of the New York law is that both parties entering into a no-fault divorce choose to work through their marital dissolution together, with complete consent of the other party. This element of mutual dissolution is lacking in other state jurisdictions that only afford unilateral no-fault divorce for irreconcilable differences or irretrievable marital breakdown at the behest of just one of the parties, often resulting in the victimization of an innocent spouse who is willing to work at the marriage. New York's Domestic Relations Law should be heralded in this regard, as it protects all New Yorkers equally in the event of marital dissolution. It is a model for restoring mutuality (and thereby minim zing victim spouses) to the other 49 jurisdictions' divorce codes. "

Lynne Marie Kohm

No comments:

Post a Comment