Judgment of Divorce Vacated Because the Divorce Was Fraudulently Filed by a Third Party Without the Knowledge of the Wife and the Husband
Just when you thought you have heard it all, a client comes into the office with a Judgment of Divorce that is twelve years old. The client explains that his wife and himself were never divorced, never filed for divorce, and although they didn’t live together…they wanted to remain married.
A Judgment of Divorce obtained in the client and his wife’s names from 2005 has just been vacated by the Court, because the divorce was fraudulently filed by a third party without the knowledge of either the Plaintiff/Wife or the Defendant/Husband.
Every once in a while, after over 20 years of practice, there is a case that is unique or different from any other case. We just received a Decision from New York County wherein the 12 year old Judgment of Divorce was vacated, because the individuals who were divorced by this Judgment of Divorce, did not want a divorce and it was done without their knowledge.
It is a very rare case with an extreme fact pattern. Our client, and his wife, had separated for a period of time over the last 10 years. In November, 2005, a Judgment of Divorce was issued divorcing the parties. The parties both claim they had no knowledge of the paperwork, did not sign the paperwork and never wanted to be divorced. Through a very unique Court application, a twelve year old divorce was vacated and the parties remain married.
After over twenty years’ experience, I have never seen a case where the parties were divorced by someone other than themselves, who executed and filed the full legal documents, paid the filing fees and submitted the divorce. The Court in this matter also had never seen such a fact pattern. It was through very unique pleadings and arguments that the Court vacated a twelve year old Judgment of Divorce on the grounds that “the matrimonial action was fraudulently filed by a third party without the knowledge of either Plaintiff/Wife or Defendant/Husband”.
We rarely encounter a fact pattern that we have not seen dozens and dozens of time over, if not hundreds or thousands of times over. This case was the one case that I have never seen in all my years of practice.
We are glad that we have prevailed in this matter.