Divorce

Divorce Attorney in Manhattan

Reliable Legal Advice for Your Divorce in Manhattan, Queens & Brooklyn

If you and your spouse have decided to end your marriage, the road ahead likely seems daunting. The divorce process is often marked by strong emotions, heated disputes, and difficult decisions. There are several issues that will need to be addressed, including:

Working with an experienced divorce lawyer in Manhattan can make a significant difference in both the process and outcome of your family law case. At the Law Office of Julio E. Portilla, P.C., our goal is to help you get through your divorce with minimal stress and maximum results. Our Manhattan divorce attorney has the experience and knowledge to handle all facets of your case and is committed to ensuring your needs are met at every stage of the legal process.

Understanding the Process of Divorce in New York

Going through a divorce can be a complex and emotional process, especially when navigating the legal requirements in New York. Understanding the different types of divorce, the grounds for divorce, and the timeline and costs involved can help you make informed decisions about your case.

At Law Office of Julio E. Portilla, P.C., our experienced divorce attorneys can provide reliable legal advice and guidance for your divorce in Manhattan, Queens, and Brooklyn. Whether you are considering an uncontested or contested divorce, we can help you understand the implications of each option and work towards a favorable outcome for your case.

Some key points to consider when going through a divorce in New York include:

  • The difference between uncontested and contested divorce
  • The grounds for divorce in Manhattan
  • The timeline for getting divorced in New York
  • The costs associated with the divorce process
  • The difference between legal separation and divorce

At Law Office of Julio E. Portilla, P.C., our qualified divorce lawyers in Manhattan are here to help you overcome the legal, emotional, and financial burdens of divorce. Call (917) 909-6166 to schedule your consultation or complete our online form. Se habla Español.


Commonly Asked Questions

What are the benefits of working with a Manhattan divorce attorney?

Working with a Manhattan divorce attorney can provide numerous benefits during the challenging time of a divorce. An attorney can offer clear and reliable legal advice, help you understand your rights, and represent your interests throughout the process. They can assist with complex issues such as alimony, child custody, child support, and the distribution of property. By having a knowledgeable attorney by your side, you can navigate the legal system more effectively and work towards a resolution that aligns with your goals, ensuring that your needs are met at every stage.

Can the Law Office of Julio E. Portilla, P.C. assist with child custody and support issues during my divorce?

Yes, the Law Office of Julio E. Portilla, P.C. is well-equipped to assist with child custody and support issues during your divorce. These are some of the most sensitive and critical aspects of divorce proceedings, and our experienced attorneys can help ensure that the best interests of your children are prioritized. We can help negotiate custody arrangements, visitation schedules, and fair child support payments, always aiming to minimize stress and conflict for all parties involved.

Requirements for Getting a Divorce

If you wish to file for a divorce in New York State, you must meet certain requirements. You must have valid grounds (or a legal reason) for divorce. You and/or your spouse must also live in the state for a specific amount of time prior to filing. Generally, either you or your spouse must be a resident of New York for a full year (or two years, in some cases) prior to the beginning of the divorce proceedings and meet certain other requirements. For example, you may need to show that the grounds for divorce are based on events that occurred in New York or that you were married in the state.

Uncontested Vs. Contested Divorce in New York

In New York, there are two main types of divorce, including uncontested and contested divorce.

Uncontested Divorce

  • An uncontested divorce is one in which the spouses can reach an agreement on all the terms of their divorce. The cost of an uncontested divorce can be dramatically lower than in other cases as it avoids the cost and stress of litigation. Also, spouses can remain in control of the outcome of their case, rather than leaving it in the hands of a judge.

Contested Divorce

  • A contested divorce is when spouses cannot agree on all divorce-related issues, including the divorce itself, child custody, spousal support, or the division of property. Often, a contested divorce is more complicated than an uncontested divorce, since a judge will rule on every aspect of the divorce. From your initial consultation and throughout the entire process to the ultimate conclusion, we communicate clearly with you regarding the options available to you and we always value the input of our clients about the strategy of the case.

What Are the Grounds for Divorce in Manhattan?

New York is a no-fault divorce state. This means that spouses may file for divorce based on there being an “irretrievable breakdown” in their marriage for at least six months. In other words, if you and your spouse can’t get along anymore and there is no chance for reconciliation to take place, you can get a divorce.

Prior to a court granting a no-fault divorce, the couple will need to show that they have resolved all matters pertaining to their divorce. This can either be done by creating an agreement or by having the court make decisions for them.

While it is not required, spouses may seek a fault-based divorce if they believe it would be advantageous. The spouse who files for the divorce will need to prove that the other spouse committed the particular misconduct they have been accused of.

An at-fault divorce may be filed on the basis of at least one of the following grounds:

  • Adultery
  • Abandonment for a year or more
  • Incarceration for at least three consecutive years during the marriage
  • Cruel and inhuman treatment creating an unsafe living environment

Alternatively, spouses may choose to file for divorce based on separation. The requesting spouse would need to demonstrate that the couple lived apart for a minimum of one year because of either a court-ordered judgment of separation or a formal written agreement. In addition, the filing spouse would have to provide proof that they adhered to all the terms and conditions of the judgment or agreement.

How Does Filing for Divorce in New York Work?

If your marriage meets the requirements for a divorce in New York, the first step in the process is to complete the initial paperwork: either a Summons with Notice or a Summons and Verified Complaint. These forms outline the grounds for divorce and any “relief,” such as child or spousal support, that you wish to seek from your spouse. Next, you will file these forms with your County Clerk’s office and obtain an Index Number. At this point, you are named as the plaintiff in the case, and your spouse is the defendant.

The divorce paperwork then must be delivered, or served, to your spouse in person by another adult. If the forms cannot be personally served to your spouse for any reason, you must request permission from the Supreme Court for an alternate delivery method. The person who serves your spouse with the divorce papers should fill out an Affidavit of Service form to prove they completed the task.

Once your spouse receives the divorce paperwork, he or she has three options. If your spouse agrees to the divorce and the terms outlined in the forms, he or she will sign a form called the Affidavit of Defendant, and your divorce is considered to be uncontested. The County Clerk will submit your paperwork to a judge who, after approving the forms and your agreed-upon settlement terms, grants your divorce.

If your spouse does not want a divorce or does not agree with the grounds for or terms of the divorce, however, he or she may choose to file a Notice of Appearance with the court instead. Your spouse may also refuse to respond to the papers, in which case you are required to wait 40 days before proceeding. In either of these scenarios, your divorce is considered contested and you and your spouse will have to appear in a New York Supreme Court.

How Long Does It Take to Get Divorced in New York?

For an uncontested divorce with no disputes, the process can take on average 3 months. For a contested divorce, the process could take around 9 months to a year, or even longer if couples decide to continue fighting over every issue.

How Much Will a Divorce Cost?

The cost of a divorce will vary depending on whether it is uncontested or contested, and how long the process will drag on. There are the typical divorce filing and court costs, as well as divorce attorney fees.

Some factors that can affect the cost of a divorce:

  • Whether your case will go to trial, which will increase legal expenses
  • If you and your spouse disagree over custody issues
  • If you have extensive marital property to valuate and divide, a financial analyst will need to be hired
  • If your and your spouse battle over property division
  • If there are alimony disputes

According to Martindale-Nolo's research, the average cost of divorce can range from $13,000-16,000, but can be lower if there are no contested issues.

What Is the Difference Between Legal Separation & Divorce?

Legal separation and divorce typically involve similar processes, but couples who file for legal separation are still legally married. In a legal separation, couples live apart and go through the court-approved processes for child custody and support, and property division. With a divorce, the marriage is dissolved and the couple is no longer legally married.

In some cases, a legal separation typically leads to a divorce. While in other cases, couples legally separate for some time apart to re-evaluate their marriage but end up changing their mind about divorce. Both divorce and legal separation go through similar legal processes and may cost the same.

Contact Experienced Manhattan Divorce Lawyers

The Law Office of Julio E. Portilla, P.C. is here to guide you through every stage of your divorce. Our Manhattan divorce attorney can ensure that the process goes as smoothly as possible and that you achieve a fair settlement.


Call (917) 909-6166 to get the legal representation you deserve. We always have your best interest in mind. Request your a case consultation with our seasoned divorce attorneys in Manhattan  at Law Office of Julio E. Portilla, P.C.. 


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