• March 19, 2023
  • Yoni Levoritz
  • Divorce

Everything you Need to Know About Jewish Divorces in New York City
A guide by the Levoritz Law Firm

Suppose you are considering getting a divorce from your Jewish spouse in New York state. In that case, you may wonder about the differences and similarities between a Jewish divorce proceeding and a Civil divorce proceeding. No one gets married with the intention of divorcing later, but unfortunately, sometimes life supersedes our ideas. Read on to learn more about the similarities and differences between New York Civil Law and Jewish law regulations on obtaining a divorce from your spouse.

What are some issues of civil enforcement of Jewish Divorces?

One of the most significant potential issues of the civil enforcement of Jewish divorces is that under New York State law unless the couple was civilly divorced, a get or a Jewish divorce is not enough to decree the couple divorced under New York law. You must get a civil divorce in New York State to be officially recognized as a divorced couple. It is not enough to discuss these arrangements with your Rabbi or court of Rabbis at the Beth Din, the Rabbinical Court of Judaism; you must decide on these issues in either a marriage settlement agreement that is signed and executed or go to Supreme Court or Family law court in New York state for a Judge to decide on the matters at hand.

How does a Jewish divorce differ from a Civil Divorce?

The following are some differences between a Jewish divorce and a civil divorce. If you have additional issues in your divorce, the best action would be to obtain clarification from a knowledgeable and experienced Jewish New York Civil law family law attorney.

● If you only have a civil divorce, you are still married according to Jewish law.
● You can not remarry or enter into a relationship with another Jewish individual until you sign the Get.
● If you remarry or are dating another Jewish individual before you sign a get in your divorce, you are considered to be committing adulterous acts within the Jewish community.
● Under Jewish law, any child that a Jewish woman has with another man other than her husband is a “mamzer,” which is a child born of adultery or incest.
● There is no waiting period under Jewish law to be able to sign a get as a couple. However, in Civil law, there is a minimum three-month wait to go through the divorce proceedings because of court filings.
● Only the New York Civil courts can determine issues such as custody arrangements.

How is a Jewish Divorce similar to a Secular- or Civil law Divorce?

Both Jewish Divorces and Civil Divorces in New York state will allow you to date another individual without committing an adulterous act or violating any adultery civil laws. Similarly, in both Civil and Jewish divorces, the children of divorce would not be considered to be a “mamzer” or other antiquated names of a child of an adulterous or unmarried couple.

Additionally, in Civil and Jewish divorces, there are avenues available to the couple to decide on child custodial issues, property division issues, and spousal support. However, it is essential to clarify that for the previously mentioned issues, you must have these confirmed in a civil divorce proceeding or a divorce settlement for them to be upheld in New York State. However, in both Civil and Jewish divorces, the two previously married individuals can discuss this both with their civil law attorney and respective Rabbis.

The Levoritz Law Firm has years of combined experience working on Jewish marriage and divorce issues. Call them today for assistance with your divorce at 855.213.3104.

FAQ’s About Jewish Divorces:

What is a “Get”?

According to The Beth Din of America, “In order to end a Jewish marriage, halacha (Jewish law) requires a Get. Without the Get (absent the death of one of them), both husband and wife may not remarry under Jewish law.” A get is the official Jewish document that symbolizes a couple’s divorce in a Jewish community. Under Jewish law, a man must give the Get and a woman may accept it. They both must do so voluntarily, and a spouse is not allowed to force the other spouse to sign a get.

Any two Jewish individuals who were previously married that wish to part ways and divorce must both sign a get, freeing the other to date others if they so wish. Further, after signing a get, your status as a divorced spouse will be recognized within the Jewish community in New York and within Israel. Even if you did not have a Jewish wedding ceremony with your intended ex-spouse, you must both sign and get to date other Jewish people in the future.

What is a Ketubah?

The most simple way to explain the concept of a Ketubah is that it is a Jewish Marriage contract stating that the two individuals intend to be married under the eyes of the Jewish faith. Jewish scholars have argued that the intention of a Ketubah is a legally binding contract that sets forth the guidelines for a Jewish marriage and divorce. Civil courts, such as the family law courts in New York state, have found that a Ketubah meets the requirements for a legally enforceable marriage contract. A ketubah is traditionally signed right before or during a Jewish marriage ceremony, marking that the couple is married under the eyes of the Jewish faith. Traditionally, a ketubah is intended to protect the woman by establishing the man’s financial obligations to her in case of divorce or widowhood. However, in modern times, it is considered a traditional aspect of a Jewish marriage ceremony.

The Levoritz Law Firm has years of combined experience working on Jewish marriage and divorce issues. Call them today for assistance with your divorce at 855.213.3104.


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