If you are looking for a shock and a laugh today, take a peek at . You’ll find a list of some of the silly, strange and/or outdated laws that are still technically in place in New York and New Jersey. In fact, just last week the state of New Jersey passed a bill striking many antiquated laws from the books.
Even some new laws are outlandish. A recent Wall Street Journal article, “New York Divorce Law Moves Closer to Overhaul,” reports: In 2010, State legislators tasked an independent group, the Law Revision Commission, with evaluating a package of divorce laws passed hastily that changed the state's approach to alimony. One law enacted a strict formula for alimony awarded during the process of divorce. The problem, according to the article, is that the formula failed to address many of the issues high-income couples experience, such as mortgage payments, one-time bonuses and savings accounts. As a result, some judges added costs for lifestyle expenses on top of the awards, in some cases based on income that was no longer available. In some extreme cases, payor spouses were forced to pay more in alimony than they earned each month...” The WJS article stated, “The Law Revision Commission also recommended abolishing the O’Brien precedent, another unique area of New York law that considers licenses or degrees earned during the marriage to be marital property.” Because of the precedent, “… divorcing couples hire experts to predict how much money their spouse might ever earn as the result of a license or degree earned during the marriage and receive up to 50% of those predicted earnings. The rulings cannot be changed, even if the spouse doesn't end up earning the expected amount.” These regulations have been called “arbitrary,” anomalous and just plain “bad.” Not exactly the way we would want our laws to be described!
If you are weighing the pros and cons of divorce to resolve a marital rift, it is important to consult with an attorney to protect your legal rights and best interests. When you turn to Brooklyn, New York divorce lawyer Mary Grace Condello to advise you, she will explain the law as it pertains to your situation and help you make informed decisions about divorce that will affect you and your family today and into the future. Call our Brooklyn law firm at (718) 259-4500 to arrange a private consultation and find out how we can help.