New York Palimony Lawyer

How do I know if I’m entitled to palimony after a breakup?

Derived from the concept of alimony, “palimony” is a term that was coined by journalists. This term is used to describe support payments made by one unmarried partner to another after a breakup. Since this not an actual legal concept, however, there is no guarantee that an unmarried partner will be entitled to any such payments after a split. Unlike spousal support, there is no provision in New York family law that requires either member of an unmarried relationship to pay alimony to the other.

Many couples in our area choose to live together for years, and the end of their relationship is often just as complex as any divorce. But because there was no legally binding agreement between them, as there is in marriage, the court will not order the payment of support or spousal maintenance. This could put you in difficulty, because you may be forced to reduce your standard of living if you were supported during the relationship by your partner. Even so, this does not mean that you are without options.

Enforcing an Implied or Written Contract

It is possible that you were promised support or were living under an implied agreement that you would be provided for financially into the future. If you believe that you deserve support, you should speak with a NYC divorce lawyer at Eiges & Orgel, PLLC about the subject of palimony. Your family law attorney can help you gather any type of documentation or evidence that would support your claim, such as written agreements, correspondence or a pattern of behavior that would establish such an agreement.

Suing for Palimony in Civil Court

If you have created a written cohabitation agreement that set forth terms for the division of your property and the promise of future support, this is as legally binding as a prenuptial agreement—even though there are no explicit laws regarding palimony. This means that you would have the right to enforce the agreement as a contract in civil court. If circumstances so allow, you could file a civil lawsuit against your former partner to establish that you should receive palimony payments, either in a lump sum or in installments.

Evidence that may help your case in civil court includes:

  • Proof that a written cohabitation agreement exists
  • Correspondence or emails discussing your arrangement
  • Testimony of friends who overheard any such discussions
  • Proof that you lived together as a couple for a long time

Can I win a palimony case without a written contract?

Most people think that their chances of recovering palimony would be slim to none if there was no written contract between them and their unmarried partner. While this could make things more difficult, you should understand that your case does not necessarily have to end there. If your attorney can establish that you and your partner were living under an oral agreement or implied contract, and that you sacrificed your financial independence for the relationship, you may have a case. Contact us to learn more about your options!

Request Your No-Cost Case Evaluation Today

Eiges & Orgel, PLLC provides comprehensive legal services to individuals who face divorce or the breakup of a long-term relationship. Even though you didn't ever marry your former partner, you may still have a strong case to demand financial support. We will argue on your behalf and won't back down in court. We have been serving clients throughout New York City and all surrounding areas for more than 40 years, so you can rest assured that your future will be in capable hands with the divorce lawyers at our firm.

Contact a New York palimony attorney at Eiges & Orgel, PLLC​ who can help you get started on a lawsuit to recover palimony payments while you transition into a new phase of your life: (347) 848-1850.