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Old 09-20-2012, 09:39 PM
choie choie is offline
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What does a final certificate of divorce look like (in NY)? Google-fu very weak.

I'm sorry, this is something I know I should be able to find by myself but for some reason I can't. And that's embarrassing for someone who's usually a Jedi at Googling.

I need to see a sample of what a set of finalized divorce papers would look like, assuming

a) We're in New York State
b) The divorce was uncontested

I've found a bunch of sample certificates for filing for divorce, but not actual final papers (or a sample thereof). The one version I have found is for a "verified complaint" action, e.g. a case of abandonment, cruel/unusual treatment, imprisonment, etc. I wouldn't mind going this route -- oh, I should say this is for a story, heh -- because the wife has divorced her husband while he's in prison -- but in NY there's a three-year requirement and I need this divorce to happen earlier than that. Also, I can have the husband not contest the divorce so the wife doesn't need to go through that waiting period.

(Unless she could cite abandonment, which only requires a year. But I guess New York wouldn't allow that if the guy's in prison, since that's considered a separate cause. It's ridiculous, really. What if the guy's in prison for murder? The wife has to wait out three years?)

Barring an actual sample, are there any NY Divorce attorneys (or anyone who's been divorced in NYS) who can tell me what exactly is on the front page of the divorce, uh, decree? (Or whatever you'd call it.) I mean everything from "Supreme Court of the State of New York / County of _______" downward. Just the cover page, though.

I'd be really grateful if someone can help! It's so frustrating, I can't believe some delighted divorced New Yorker hasn't posted a picture of their divorce papers on their blog. Or if they have, I haven't found it.
Old 09-21-2012, 06:37 AM
racer72 racer72 is offline
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Location: Auburn, WA
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If New York is like my state (Washington), the final divorce paperwork is just the petition paperwork with the judge's signature on the bottom of the last page. There is no certificate or any other such item.
Old 09-21-2012, 07:39 AM
edwards_beard edwards_beard is offline
Join Date: Jun 2012
Location: Massachusetts
Posts: 951
In Massachusetts, I just have a paper from the court with Divorce Nisi at the top with the date and Judge's signature. Looks nothing like a certificate at all, but it is one of the best pieces of paper I have!

Last edited by edwards_beard; 09-21-2012 at 07:39 AM. Reason: I spelled my state wrong
Old 09-21-2012, 07:45 AM
Nawth Chucka Nawth Chucka is offline
Join Date: Mar 2002
Location: Whites elevated; UT
Posts: 5,256
Originally Posted by racer72 View Post
If New York is like my state (Washington), the final divorce paperwork is just the petition paperwork with the judge's signature on the bottom of the last page. There is no certificate or any other such item.
Same from Michigan.
Aren't we so helpful OP?
Old 09-21-2012, 09:19 AM
Shagnasty Shagnasty is offline
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I didn't get a certificate either when I got divorced in Massachusetts. The least they could have done was give me a gold sticker or something.
Old 09-21-2012, 12:08 PM
Edward The Head Edward The Head is online now
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The only thing I got from Maryland was the judge's signature. I'm guessing you're supposed to keep it, but the only reason to really have it is to get remarried. Nothing that I've done since has needed proof of divorce.
Old 09-21-2012, 12:44 PM
anson2995 anson2995 is offline
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Join Date: Sep 1999
Location: Upstate NY
Posts: 2,738
In New York there is a document called the divorce decree, which outlines the terms as they've been agreed to (or ordered by a judge). Once the judge signs it, it's official.

There is something called a divorce certificate, which is issued by a county clerk. It just has the relevant names and dates and certifies that they were divorced. This is sometimes needed to settle financial matters, etc. It's not the sort of thing a person would receive in the mail to notify them that a divorce has been finalized.

In New York, being in prison is a grounds for uncontested divorce. We've discussed this at least once before.


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