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Ely
Ely, Counselor at Law
Category: Family Law
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Experience:  Private practice with focus on family, criminal, PI, consumer protection, and business consultation.
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NY state divorce----daughter served husband with divorce papers

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NY state divorce----daughter served husband with divorce papers about 2 weeks ago. She is now working with her attorney to file an amendment (not sure the right term) to clearly define what she wants (personal property and her name off the house mortgage within 18 months)--nothing more (no children in this marriage). Husband says he is going to serve her with his papers. Is this a correct/allowable process or should the two lawyers work from the original papers she served to reach agreement? Also, husband is saying he will be present when papers are served to her which would be where she works---a hospital that will require their security to be present to protect employees/patients. Can he be present? She would very much like to avoid a "public" scene at her workplace.
Submitted: 10 months ago.
Category: Family Law
Expert:  Ely replied 10 months ago.
Hello friend. My name is XXXXX XXXXX welcome to JustAnswer. Please note: (1) this is general information only, not legal advice, and, (2) there may be a slight delay between your follow ups and my replies.

She is now working with her attorney to file an amendment (not sure the right term) to clearly define what she wants (personal property and her name off the house mortgage within 18 months)--nothing more (no children in this marriage).

It sounds like she wants to file a Petitioner's Amended Complaint for Divorce. This is not unusual.

Husband says he is going to serve her with his papers. Is this a correct/allowable process or should the two lawyers work from the original papers she served to reach agreement?

Yes, this is correct, provided that when the husband states that he is going to "serve" her, he means that he will send an answer. When a party is sued (and divorce is a lawsuit), that party may file an answer with the Court and sends a copy of that answer to the other party.

However, he should be sending that Answer to her attorney and not to her.

She may file to amend her complaint before or after he files an answer.

The two attorneys can negotiate off whatever they want - they are not bound by whatever is on the documents. So if the parties come up with an agreement that has one party include something that has yet been added to the pleading, that is totally acceptable. The Court normally signs off on it if both parties endorse the settlement.

Only if the parties cannot settle does the Court make the decision for them.

Also, husband is saying he will be present when papers are served to her which would be where she works---a hospital that will require their security to be present to protect employees/patients. Can he be present?

This is unusual. Normally, documents are sent via certified mail. An original complaint for divorce (hers) is sometimes served via a private process server.

If he thinks that he can serve her, or be present when she is served by a private process server (again, since he is simply responding, only certified mail is necessary), he is either confused or is attempting to intimidate her, or both. Plus, assuming that his answer is sent by certified mail, it makes no sense for him to be "be" there. Is he going to stand there and wait for the mailman?

Finally, the answer is sent to her attorney, not him. So perhaps he would go and stand outside her attorney's office and wait for the mailman? As you can see, his claims make no sense at all.

So he is confused.

If she really believes that he may try to pull some stunt and visit her at work, she can ask her attorney to file an emergency restraining order that would prevent him from doing this.

I hope this helps and clarifies. Best of luck to her.

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Ely, Counselor at Law
Category: Family Law
Satisfied Customers: 86599
Experience: Private practice with focus on family, criminal, PI, consumer protection, and business consultation.
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