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Court Decides doctrine of Divorce Issued in Ukraine will be Recognized


Olga Vartsaba is the plaintiff of this case and Artur Vartsaba is the defendant. The case is being heard in the Supreme Court of the State of New York located in Kings County. A New York Family Lawyer said the defendant has moved for an order to dismiss the complaint made against him by the plaintiff on the ground that he and the plaintiff wife were previously divorced by a decree made in the Ukraine. He also states that the complaint should be dismissed on the basis of lack of jurisdiction of this court and seeks to sanction the plaintiff for a frivolous lawsuit and seeks awards for fees, costs, disbursements and fees for his attorney.

Case Background

On the 31st of July, 1995, the plaintiff received a letter from the United States of America stating that she was being awarded with winning the immigration lottery. The plaintiff, defendant, and their daughter then immigrated to the United States.

On the 14th of May, 1996, the defendant began a divorce proceeding against the plaintiff in the Central Court located in the city of Simferopol in the Ukraine. A New York Custody Lawyer said the Ukrainian court held a hearing on the 12th of December and dissolved the marriage between the two parties.

In relevance to this case the wife admitted to the claim and asked the court to consider the issue in her absence and went on to state that it was impossible for her to live with the defendant.

In April of 2004, the husband brought forth an action for divorce in this court. A judgment for divorce was granted on the 17th of June, 2004. On the 25th of July, 2006, the defendant remarried.

The wife moved to vacate the judgment by an order to show cause that is dated the 16th of January, 2007. The husband made a cross motion for an order to recognize the decree of divorce that was made by the Ukrainian court and vacating the judgment of divorce that was made by the New York court. The defendant also sought to dismiss the wife’s application.

On the 31st of May, 2007, the couple entered a stipulation to void the judgment of divorce that was entered by the court in New York because the plaintiff alleges that a divorce action was finalized in 1996 in the Ukraine. This stipulation is entered for the sole purpose of vacating the divorce degree that was entered in the New York action.

Case Discussion and Decision

A Queens Family Lawyer said the defendant argues that at the time the plaintiff began this instant action the couple was already divorced. He also states that at the time the judgment for divorce was granted they were living apart and there was not intention of reconciliation. The defendant does state that the applications for immigration state that the parties were still married because he had agreed to help the family relocated to the United States.

The plaintiff states that after she received notice that she had one the immigration lottery she, her husband, and her daughter met with the American authorities in Warsaw. A Queens Custody Lawyer said she states that the family moved to Brooklyn together and resided there until February of 2006 when her husband moved out. The couple stated that they were married on their 2003 naturalization applications in the United States.

The court has carefully reviewed all of the facts of the case and determined that the doctrine of divorce issued by the Ukraine will be recognized. The defendant’s motion for dismissal is granted, but relief that is requested is denied.

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