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Myths about divorce in New York

If you are considering divorce, you might be surprised at how much you're going to hear about the subject. It's likely that at least one person will tell you a myth about divorce, such as believing that you can deny visitation if the other parent does not pay child support. This is one myth that is steadfastly false, as child support and parenting time are not related. Here are other myths that may interest you:

-- Mothers always get custody. This might have been true in the past, but the laws regarding who gets primary custody have now made it where either the father or mother can get custody. The main consideration is what is in the best interests of the child.

-- Your child can choose which parent he or she lives with. In some states, a judge might consider an older child's preference, but the final decision as to primary custody will be where the court feels the best interests of the child are.

-- You have to have a lawyer. While you can represent yourself, it is not recommended -- strongly not recommended. You need representation so you can be assured that your rights and interests are protected.

-- You have to get divorced where you were married. While most states have requirements as to how long you have to live in the state to get a divorce, it does not have to be the same state where you married.

-- If a spouse commits adultery, he or she will lose everything. There generally has to be other issues at work before a judge will consider leaving assets and more to the faithful spouse.

Many of these myths can significantly affect the outcome of a divorce if you were to put stock in them. As it is, divorce is difficult enough. Make sure you know the truth moving forward.

Source: Huffington Post, "12 Top Divorce Myths," Daniel Clement, May 24, 2016

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