When you are married, you proceed through a matrimonial docket – often called a divorce docket. When you are not married, you proceed under what’s called an FD docket or a non-dissolution docket; that’s a docket for unmarried parties. In cases where there is a period of cohabitation, and someone is seeking division based upon the length of relationship, the clerk will assign those types of complex cases to the matrimonial docket because they are more typical of a divorce case. But in either docket – whether it’s the non-dissolution FD docket or the divorce SM docket – the statutes remain the same and the courts must consider the same law on each point.
Abigale M. Stolfe is a partner at Stolfe Zeigler, a boutique family law firm that obtains favorable outcomes for high-net-worth, complex, and litigious cases.