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August 15, 2010

STATE BAR ASSOCIATION COMMENDS GOVERNOR PATERSON FOR SIGNING NO-FAULT DIVORCE LEGISLATION INTO LAW

New York State Bar Association President Stephen P. Younger of New York (Patterson Belknap Webb & Tyler LLP) today commended Governor Paterson for signing into law recently passed legislation allowing no-fault divorce in New York.

"With a stroke of his pen, Governor Paterson has helped to ease some of the financial and emotional burdens that marital separations place on New York's children and families," said President Younger. "By removing the requirement to prove fault, divorcing couples and the courts will no longer have to waste resources litigating on whether a marriage should end, but will be able to better focus on issues such as the welfare of the children, fair division of marital assets and other economic concerns. The court system will ultimately realize substantial cost savings. The State Bar Association has long supported efforts to reform New York's divorce laws. I would like to also commend the State Legislature, as well as the members of our Family Law Section, for their tremendous efforts in ensuring that this important and sensible measure finally became law."

Since 2004, the State Bar has strongly supported enactment of no-fault divorce in New York. In April 2003, the State Bar's Family Law Section surveyed its approximately 3,000 members to gather data regarding contested and uncontested divorce cases. More than 75 percent of the respondents agreed that fault should be eliminated as a ground for divorce in New York due to the adverse strain placed on spouses and families during this difficult process.

To view a copy of President Younger's letter to Governor Paterson in support of no-fault divorce legislation, please visit http://www.nysba.org/NoFaultLetter.

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Founded in 1876, the 77,000-member New York State Bar Association is the official statewide organization of lawyers in New York and the largest voluntary state bar association in the nation. The State Bar's programs and activities have continuously served the public and improved the justice system for more than 130 years. For more information, visit us at our Web site at www.nysba.org.