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Practice Areas
Uncontested Divorce

In New York a divorce is either uncontested or contested. When you and your spouse have already agreed on all the terms of your divorce, then an uncontested divorce is your best option. As a divorce lawyer NY clients trust, I can and will draft, file and serve all the papers necessary for you to obtain an uncontested divorce.  These papers will address the grounds for divorce and any other issues relevant to your situation such as spousal and child support, child custody, and property distribution. If you and your spouse do not already agree on how to proceed, I can help you reach an agreement through mediation.  The written agreement which results from the divorce mediation will deal with all the issues unique to your divorce and will be included as part of your uncontested divorce papers.
Contested Divorce

A divorce is contested once one spouse goes to court and files for divorce against the other.  Almost all contested divorces are resolved through a negotiated agreement. Sometimes cases are settled almost right away and others times only after a number of court appearances. As a former New York matrimonial judge, I am uniquely qualified to protect your interests in any settlement negotiations and obtain a settlement on terms favorable to you. I am also thoroughly familiar with the process by which a contested case is litigated in court including the mechanisms by which you discover the financial details of your marriage, as well as the use of experts to report on child-related issues or to conduct appraisals of businesses, real estate and other property.  As an expert on the rules of evidence, I will also effectively represent your interests in the rare event that your case goes to trial.
Same-Sex Relationships & Gay Divorce
New York courts currently hear child custody disputes involving same-sex partners.  As a judge, I presided over a number of this type of custody case.  In one such  recent case,  that of Debra H v Janice R, I held that a same-sex partner is entitled to a hearing to determine her parental rights to a non-biological child whom she had not adopted. This case is currently being heard by the Court of Appeals, the highest court in New York State. My opinion in that case is referenced in the section on Publications and Notable Cases.  It is also likely that our courts will soon hear divorce cases of same-sex couples married in states where gay marriage is legal. 
These cases will present the same types of issues common to heterosexual divorce cases, that of spousal and child support, child custody, and equitable distribution of property. My expertise in divorce and custody law makes me very well-suited to act as your lawyer in these cases.
60 East 42nd Street
40th Floor
New York, NY 10165
(212) 687-3822
Child Custody
Who should have custody of the children is probably the most emotionally charged and contentious issue in a divorce proceeding or in a separate custody case involving unmarried couples in family court.  There are two components of custody: that of legal custody which concerns who is to make the final decisions concerning how to bring up the children and that of physical custody which concerns with whom the children will be residing.  The standard in New York for awarding custody is what is “in the best interest of the children.”  I am especially qualified to represent you in this type of case, having presided over extended custody trials and having settled many others.
Family Law

Harold B. Beeler
Divorce & Family Law Attorney & Mediator
60 East 42nd Street, 40th Floor
New York, NY 10165
(212) 687-3822
Prenuptial, Postnuptial & Separation Agreements
New York law allows couples to contract with each other before or after marriage to determine their own financial relationships and obligations during marriage. When entered into before marriage, this type of agreement is called a prenuptial agreement. After marriage, it is called a postnuptial agreement. Both types of agreements can protect your assets from the application of the rules of property distribution which would otherwise apply upon divorce. These agreements must be “fair when made” and “not unconscionable” at the time of enforcement, and they must be signed in accordance with certain formalities. 

A separation agreement is ordinarily entered into by spouses at the end of their marriage who have agreed to live separate and apart. Like pre and postnuptial agreements, separation agreements permit spouses to determine for themselves major issues involved in their divorce, rather than have a judge make these decisions. These issues can include child custody, child support, maintenance (alimony) and equitable distribution of property. 

As a matrimonial judge, I was frequently called upon to interpret the meaning of pre and postnuptial agreements and of separation agreements, and to determine their validity. With this experience, I will draft agreements for you which will meet all legal requirements.
Harold B. Beeler, Esq. | 60 East 42nd St., New York, New York 10165 | Phone: (212) 687- 3822
Copyright 2010 Harold B. Beeler: Divorce Lawyer NY. All Rights Reserved.

Divorce Mediation - NY - Practice Areas

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