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How should I manage breach of divorce settlement agreement and new divorce action in different state?

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My wife has filed for divorce in NY state. I am living overseas, and I need to self-represent as I have very little money. The court has allowed me to be served via email at my request.

Before separating, we were living (in a house which we still own) in Idaho. An ID court dismissed a prior divorce action there case before trial due delays finalizing a settlement agreement. After the dismissal, we did ultimately sign a settlement agreement, which obliges payments from her to me. She now refuses to honor the agreement & recently brought this new action in NY.

I do not have resources to return to NY, nor retain a lawyer on a fee basis. Can breach of contract be filed in NY, or must it be ID? Would a lawyer in either state be likely to take a portion of claims as future payment?

Attorney Answers 2


  1. You'll have to hire an attorney here or return to New York and battle pro se.


  2. The agreement you signed in Idaho (provided it was done properly) is a contract. Since she has filed in NYS, I would suggest that you defend yourself in the NYS case. I don't of any NY attorneys that would take such a case on a contingency basis.

    You can contact the bar association in the county where the divorce is filed. They may be able to provide you with a pro bono attorney or suggest something else.

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