Completing and filing the appropriate paperwork can help minimize unnecessary delays in the divorce process. In New York, if couples can agree on the major issues of divorce, the matter can proceed as uncontested and avoid trial. In these simplified cases, the courts provide online access to the required forms as well as instructions to help parties dissolve their marriage without the assistance of an attorney.
New York provides forms for uncontested divorce through the New York State Unified Court System website. These documents are valid in all New York courts, and are accompanied by instructions on how to fill them out and when and where they should be filed. The website offers the forms in downloadable formats, such as WordPerfect and Adobe Portable Document Format (PDF), or they may be completed online and printed. As an alternative, some online legal document providers also provide electronic access to New York-specific uncontested divorce forms.
The uncontested divorce process in New York is initiated by completing and filing a summons and verified complaint. The summons provides notice of the divorce action to your spouse and the complaint sets out the reason for divorce as well as supplies basic information about the parties and property. The law requires that these documents be personally delivered to your spouse, but this requirement may be waived by having your spouse file an affidavit. The affidavit simply acknowledges receipt of the complaint and indicates agreement with the statements contained in the document.
Before a divorce can be finalized in New York, additional forms need to be completed and filed. The state requires parties to submit a sworn statement of removal of barriers to remarriage, affirmation of regularity, and request for judicial intervention. These documents are short and straightforward, and simply inform the court that you and your spouse are currently legally married and your divorce is ready for review by a judge. The court also requires parties to fill in the forms the court will use to grant the divorce. These will be signed by the judge and include a judgment form, notice of entry, and findings of fact and conclusions of law.
Parties with children under 21 are required to file additional forms when pursuing an uncontested divorce in New York. This paperwork includes a qualified medical child support order, child support worksheet and support collection unit information sheet. The support order requests you to enter information about any existing employment-based insurance coverage which can be used to cover the medical needs of your child. The child support worksheet requires annual income and expenses of both parents be supplied, which will be relied on in computing a child support obligation. This payment amount is then included in the information sheet and will be kept on record in the Office of Child Support Enforcement.