Myth: My life will be destroyed by my divorce. I will never be happy again.
Fact: There is life after divorce. This is not to minimize the pain and grief that comes with divorce itself. But divorce can be a time of personal growth that can lead to a healthier, more satisfying life.
Myth: Because my spouse cheated on me, I will get a better settlement (or a court would take this into account in making decisions about my case).
Fact: In New York State, “fault” has no bearing on economic outcome.
Myth: All the marital assets automatically get divided in half.
Fact: New York is an “equitable distribution” state, meaning that assets are to be divided equitably, or fairly. In a long term marriage, “equitable distribution” is often interpreted as equal division, at least with respect to certain types of assets.
Myth: It’s better for me to take the most extreme positions, because otherwise I won’t end up with a fair settlement.
Fact: In order to successfully negotiate a settlement with your spouse, you must consider how any possible resolution will work for your spouse, not just yourself (a cardinal rule in any successful negotiation.)
Myth: Lots of kids see their parents fight bitterly in divorce and these kids end up just fine.
Fact: The more anger and hostility between you and your spouse to which the children are privy, the more they will be harmed by the divorce.