Some Qs about Divorce and Separation (in the state of NY)

Well, I’m currently separated from my wife. I prefer the word estranged. (OK OK she moved out.)

She tells me that we should get legally separated.

What is the difference between legally separated and divorced?
She also tells me that in the state of NY we have to be legally separated for one year before we can divorce. She claims a friend of her father, who is a lawyer, told her this. I haven’t looked into this as I don’t particularly want either separation or divorce nor do I have funds enough to even say the word lawyer aloud.

Is it true we need a legal separation first?

Thank you for your responses

This page give a summary of New York divorce law, with cites. (Found by Googling, oddly enough, “new york divorce law.”)

IANAL, etc.


It looks like for a no fault divorce we do have to be separated for a year.

I have a friend who’s looking into this. I believe it’s the cheapest way to become disentangled financially. You’re still responsible for debts you’ve accumulated together, but you aren’t responsible for her purchases after the date of separation, cannot enter into a contract together, etc… And you still have the other benefits of marriage, i.e., insurance, next-of-kin status, and the like.


I was wondering about the insurance. I have it though work and I don’t see any need to cut her off from it as she works as a temp, which means she doesn’t work very much. So she really needs the coverage.


She needs to understand that she’s going to lose that if she divorces you.