Confidentiality Agreements in Divorce
Long Island Divorce Attorneys Explain
People go through an array of emotions during a divorce. If that’s you, some of the things you may be feeling are embarrassment, shame, or anxiety that the details of your divorce will become public
Celebrities and public figures are not the only ones at risk. Personal information about you, such as your finances or child custody agreement, is available to anyone in New York. Any case that is filed with the courts is public record and accessible to anyone who wants to look it up.
Social media can be another problem in a divorce. Your soon-to-be-ex-spouse may be venting or saying malicious things about you that could be damaging personally and professionally. Having a confidentiality agreement in place can prevent that and keep away the extra strain of exposure in divorce.
What Is a Confidentiality Agreement?
A confidentiality agreement keeps details such as finances, alimony payments, child support payments, child custody, and your financial assets sealed from public record. A person will not be able to find out exact details from your divorce, although they will be able to see that it was filed and when it was made final.
A confidentiality agreement would also keep spouses from discussing the case and bashing each other publicly. These agreements are popular for those who are well known and don’t want the media to have access to their private affairs. It is also a common option for those who job may be jeopardized if an ex-spouse is publicly venting.
Mediation in Lieu of Court Proceedings
Avoiding the courts altogether is a great way to keep your divorce private. In community mediation centers across the state of New York, the proceedings are completely confidential - an agreement must be signed by both parties agreeing to abide by that before mediation starts. (Private mediations may not be strictly confidential - consult with a lawyer beforehand.)
A mediation only involves the couple, their lawyers, and the mediator. Both lawyers present what their clients want out of the divorce, and the mediator helps both sides come to a compromise. If mediation is successful, then the divorce agreement is filed with the court. The details of the agreement will be made court record. However, this avoids a lot of the contentious material that makes public scrutiny more likely.
On the other hand, if mediation does not end well and you do end up going to court, theoretically none of the information from the mediation can be admitted in court. This includes comments that were made against the other spouse during mediation. The mediator also cannot be called to testify in court.
Handling a Divorce Gracefully
Divorces do not have to be ugly. They can be handled skillfully and leave you and your ex-spouse on cordial terms. Communication is the key to achieving this. Talk to your partner and express your concerns about keeping the divorce private. Both of you can benefit from a confidentiality agreement, and if children are involved, it’s the better way to go.
The Law Offices of Paul A. Boronow, PC, can give you a free consultation on confidentiality agreements and divorce. Call us today at (516) 227-5353 to speak with one of our knowledgeable New York divorce attorneys.
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