About the New York Enoch Arden Law

  • Posted on: Oct 26 2017
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The thought of your spouse going missing is something many of us never consider. However, it happens all the time. But what happens if you want to get a divorce after your spouse disappears?

In the state of New York, the Enoch Arden Law helps the spouses of missing people get a legal divorce without the other person. Let’s take a look at what this law means.

What is the New York Enoch Arden Law?

The Enoch Arden Law was named after a character in a poem who was stranded on an island for many years. After leaving the island, he returned home to find that his wife was remarried, assuming that he had died.

Under the Enoch Arden Law, spouses of missing persons can legally dissolve the marriage on the grounds of absence. However, they must be able to prove the following:

  • The missing spouse must be gone for at least five consecutive years
  • There is a diligent search to find the missing spouse
  • There is no indication that the spouse is still living

In order to dissolve your marriage under the New York Enoch Arden Law, you must submit a petition to the court. Once that petition is accepted, you and your divorce attorney must present evidence indicating that your spouse is missing and is presumed dead. The court will then decide whether or not to grant the dissolution.

What Happens if Your Spouse Reappears?

If you dissolve your marriage through the New York Enoch Arden Law and your spouse reappears, you will still need to go through divorce procedures. This includes dividing your property and determining child support or spousal maintenance.

If you are remarried when your spouse reappears, your new marriage will still be valid.

A divorce is never an easy process. However, it is made even more complicated if your spouse isn’t around. To help you through the divorce process, you want to work with an expert divorce attorney who has your best interests in mind. The team at FK Law Group can help you through your divorce and ensure you’re following all the appropriate steps.

To begin talking about the divorce process, contact our office at 800.631.1757.


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