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New City NY Family Law Blog

Bringing up a prenup's value easier the second time around

Planning for a wedding is always a huge task, but planning for a second wedding can have an even more overwhelming list of to do's before the "I do." Usually, grooms-to-be and brides-to-be will be somewhat cautious about blending finances the second time around. After going through a divorce in the past, many couples will be understandably hesitant to dive right in to a second marriage without the proper planning beforehand.

Couples who are re-marrying in New York are often more open to the idea of a prenuptial agreement. While these agreements can benefit those getting married for the first time or the fourth, they are especially valuable to those marrying someone who earns more or less than they do. According to a recent report from U.S. Trust, of women who remarry, about three out of ten brings in more assets than their future spouse.

Despite gay marriage gains, struggle for benefits continues

Residents of New York have seen many victories in the fight for gay rights over the past decade. Most notably, New York is among the states that have legalized gay marriage; as such, it is a state in which any same-sex couple can get married and divorced the same way any other couple would. Still, the evolving legal landscape is often confusing for same-sex partners as well as for heterosexual couples when it comes to divorce, rights and domestic issues.

Recently, the U.S. federal government announced that it would be granting more benefits to same-sex couples. The announcement came about a year after the Supreme Court ruled that same-sex couples are indeed entitled to benefits at the federal level. However, for some gay widows and widowers, obtaining certain benefits, such as pension benefits, from both private companies and federal employers has been an uphill battle.

What makes a judge throw out a prenuptial agreement?

One of the biggest nightmares of any divorcing New Yorker occurs when a prenuptial agreement is disputed. Since prenups are often formed to protect assets and property interests, it can be jarring to realize the protections found in the document may not endure scrutiny. While no one wants to be involved in a prenuptial agreement dispute, sometimes they are necessary if interests and rights are to be maintained during and after divorce.

Divorcing retirees face double challenge in New York State

New York residents know that planning for retirement can be one of life's many complicated issues. Nowadays, with an economy that is far from certain for many workers at or near retirement, the subject of retirement may be one New Yorkers would rather postpone considering. Still, without an honest review of one's financial situation, retirements can be thrown into chaos.

New Yorkers' family law issues face long delays in court

Most New Yorkers understand that when they have to go to court, they are going to have to wait. Still, there are times when even the most patient of people becomes frustrated when their family law issues become too drawn-out.

Fathers leading the way in joint child custody trend

Father's Day, like all holidays, tends to mean different things for different people. For many New York residents, it may mean telling dad how much he means to them, or spending time with a father figure who played an important role in one's childhood. Whatever the special meaning, Father's Day this year has occurred at a time when men are demanding more equal treatment in child custody decisions.

Evolving prenup clauses reflect tech-obsessed times

Most New York residents know that prenuptial agreements can address asset division in a divorce. What many people probably don't realize, however, is that a prenuptial agreement can cover more than just the splitting of marital property. A properly-drafted prenup can address assets that may not have high financial value but nonetheless have intense sentimental meaning. A prenuptial agreement can also address certain issues involving alimony.

NBA star and wife dispute prenup amid infidelity claims

Manhattan courthouses see their fair share of high-profile couples negotiating divorce legal issues. Not often, though, does a high-asset divorce feature nearly every imaginable element of a contentious split. From arguments over prenuptial agreements and alimony, to a pending criminal weapons case, the split between New York Knicks player Raymond Felton and his wife has been a dramatic ordeal.

New York courts handle same-sex partners' custody issues

The common law presumes that a child born to a married heterosexual couple is the child of the two spouses. Unless infidelity is alleged and proven, it is generally accepted that a husband and wife share parental rights over any children born during their union. This presumption becomes a bit more complicated when the married couple includes two women and no men.

Several New York courts have heard cases involving the rights of non-biological, same-sex parents, but a recent matter heard upstate provides analysis on extending the presumption to all married partners, regardless of gender. The decision follows the logic that, if a husband and wife are presumed to be the parents of a child born to their marriage, then so too should two legally married women or men share in that deduction. This decision would extend the presumption regardless of whether the non-biological, same-sex partner adopted the child.

Singer's ex-wife wants a share of his hits decades after divorce

All New York residents seeking a divorce must list all their assets and divide the marital property according to standards of fairness under state law. This process is known as property division, and it's rarely easy. As a general rule, when the assets are more varied and more complex, the process of dividing them is more complex as well. For that reason, high-asset divorce tends to be more involved and time-consuming than divorce for couples with lower incomes.

A recent dispute involving the singer-songwriter Smokey Robinson shows how difficult this process can become. The Motown star and his wife were divorced in 1986, but she recently claimed that she should be entitled to 50 percent of new revenues he will be receiving from some of his hits like "You've Really Got a Hold on Me," "Tears of a Clown," and "The Tracks of My Tears."

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