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Court Looks at Jurisdiction Issue


When people have contacts that are strong in other countries, they can sometimes become confused about how to handle family law situations so that they are in compliance with the laws of New York. New York is well known for being a hub for many different cultures. Many people from other countries use New York as a port of entry into the United States. However, a New York Drug Crime Lawyer said many people who immigrate to the United States to find work or a better life maintain the ties that they had in their home country. It can be easier for them in many cases to continue to rely on the legal system that they grew up with and understand in their home country. What they do not realize is that if they have become residents of New York, then they will have to comply with the laws of the state of New York in order to ensure that they are in compliance with the legal system here.

In 1901, a man from Havana, Cuba met and married a woman in New York. They established a home and a family in New York. On January 11, 1934, the pair decided to separate. The wife was granted custody of the children and she was awarded alimony and child support. The separation was conducted pursuant to the laws of New York. The case was handled by the Supreme Court of Bronx County in New York State. In 1955, the husband died and the wife discovered that in 1934, the husband had gone to Cuba and obtained a foreign divorce decree. She did not know then or at the time of his death that he had gotten a divorce. She was not served and she was not present in the court. She did not have any representative present in the court. After the divorce was obtained, she was never notified that the husband had gotten a divorce.

When he died, she discovered that he had obtained a divorce and she was not included as a person who was family in his estate. She filed an appeal in probate court to be given the status of his wife in the probate of his estate. A New York Criminal Lawyer he contends that she never knew that he had obtained a divorce. She further contends that the foreign divorce was not legal because they were both living in the Bronx in New York at the time that her husband had divorced her in Cuba. A Nassau Drug Possession Lawyer said she maintains that it was an illegal action for her husband to appeal to a court with no jurisdiction over the couple to obtain a divorce. She points out that they had lived in the Bronx for more than thirty years at the time that he obtained a divorce in Cuba. he filed a motion with the court for a summary judgment in her favor determining that for the purposes of inheritance in his estate, that she should be considered his widow with all of the legal privileges that widowhood would entail.

The court assessed the situation and determined that the woman was correct. Since, the divorce decree was obtained on foreign soil which the couple had not lived on in more than thirty years, the divorce was not legally recognized in the state of New York. This decision was further solidified by the fact that the wife had never been notified that her husband had obtained a divorce in Cuba. A Queens Drug Possession Lawyer said that she was not allowed to be present at the hearing of the decree, and she was not provided an opportunity to voice her side of the situation. Because, she was not notified and was not treated in compliance with the laws of New York, the court grants her request and gives her full widow status as it pertains to the probate of his estate.

At Stephen Bilkis & Associates with its family Lawyers, have convenient offices throughout New York and Metropolitan area. Our probate lawyers can provide you with advice to guide you through difficult situations. Without an estate Lawyer, you could lose precious compensation to help your family.

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