National Law Day (May 1st) and What It Means for Your Divorce

In 1958, President Eisenhower declared May 1st to be Law Day in the United States. Although it is not an officially recognized government holiday, it is a day to celebrate law universally and spend time discussing how the law is meant to protect the people. In many cases, people are unaware about the many laws that affect them on a daily basis and this day is meant to raise awareness and inform them of these matters.

In the case of divorce law, it’s even more common for couples facing distress to have a hard time understanding the divorce process and how these laws will affect them. David Badanes, Esq. and The Badanes Law Office, P.C. are taking the time this Law Day to explain the history of divorce law and how each individual’s cases can be impacted.

It is often stated that it is much easier to get married than it is to get divorced. This is generally a true statement. For example, in New York, there are very few legal requirements in order to get married.  You certainly never have to get a Judge’s permission or get a Court Order in order to get married. In contrast, once married, to dissolve a divorce you will need to obtain a Court Order – called a Judgment of Divorce (or colloquially a “divorce decree”). When seeking a divorce or if you are the Defendant in a divorce case, your divorce is governed by New York State’s Domestic Relations Law.  This law provides the basis of how a Court will rule on all the issues involved in your divorce.

The intent of the divorce laws is to provide fairness in whatever means necessary. Spousal maintenance, what was once called “alimony,” is in the law to provide economic support for the spouse who might have sacrificed their career or income to support a family. When there are children, the intent of the divorce laws is shifted instead to protect and provide for the children. This means that there is a requirement to pay child support.

In New York, over the last 40 years, there have been significant changes to the divorce laws. One of the most significant changes in New York, is prior to 2010, in order to get divorced you had to prove “fault” or “grounds,” such as (i) abandonment for one or more years; (ii) cruel and inhuman treatment; or (iii) adultery. This was often an impediment to getting a divorce and also costly to the parties. Since October, 2010, New York now allows no fault divorces, where you don’t need to prove any fault, you simply file for divorce and once the issues in the divorce are resolved or determined by the Judge, a divorce will be granted.

While this process and many of these laws may feel overwhelming at first glance, The Badanes Law Office, P.C. is here to help you make sense of all of this.

If you are contemplating getting a divorce, and need an attorney to represent you, call David Badanes and the Badanes Law Office today at 631-239-1702, email at or visit our web site:  The Badanes Law Office has offices in Northport, Suffolk County and Uniondale, Nassau County.

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