May 18

Maryland’s Highest Court Allows Same-Sex Divorce

Today, Maryland’s highest court (Court of Appeals), in the case of Port v. Cowan, unanimously ruled that the state can grant divorces to same-sex couples legally married in other states. The decision states that “a valid out-of-state same-sex marriage should be treated by Maryland courts as worthy of divorce.”

May 16

WSJ Article about “No-Fault” Divorce in New York

WSJ Article about “No-Fault” Divorce in New York

Sophia Hollander of the Wall Street Journal has written a fascinating article about New York’s “No Fault” divorce law which now allows a spouse to seek and obtain a divorce without claiming or proving “grounds.”

In the article, Ms. Hollander details a trial that this blog has covered previously – the case of Sorrentino v. Sorrentino, in which Judge Quinn of the Suffolk County Supreme Court ordered a trial to be held in order to determine if the Plaintiff-spouse had proven that the relationship between her and her husband had suffered an “irretrievable breakdown.”

May 8

Proposal to Permit E-Filing in New York State Family Courts

Proposal to Permit E-Filing in New York State Family Courts

According to a New York Law Journal article, Chief Administrative Judge, the Honorable A. Gail Prudenti, has proposed a new system to allow electronic filing in Family Court and criminal courts. Details of the new system have not yet been finalized but this may make filing much easier – assuming that there are no hiccups along the way.

May 3

Linda Evangelista’s Right to Child Support Prior to Petitioning

Linda Evangelista’s Right to Child Support Prior to Petitioning

The child support trial between supermodel Linda Evangelista and Francois-Henri Pinault began today in Manhattan Family Court. The two have a five-year-old child together named Augustin. According to the New York Post, Evangelista’s attorney claimed that for the first four years of Augustin’s life, Pinault had not provided “one penny, franc or euro in financial contribution” to Evangelista as child support.

Under New York’s Family Court Act § 440, unless the child is receiving public assistance, an award of child support is effective as of “the date of the filing of the petition thereof.” This means that the child support obligation is retroactive to the date the support petition was filed with the court.

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