In 2010, the divorce law changed in that the legislature created a presumption that the monied spouse (the spouse with more money and a higher income) must pay the legal fees of the spouse who pays less. This means the spouse with more money pays the legal fees of the spouse who pays less unless there is a compelling reason why he shouldn’t. How much in legal fees the monied spouse is required to pay is up to the judge. The amount of legal fees depends on a variety of factors including how much money the parties have, how complicated the case is expected to be, how much money each party makes and where the case is litigated (NYC attorneys charged more than attorneys upstate). The link above is an article explaining how this new law played out in a NYC divorce involving a hedge manager. The husband was required to pay 1 million in legal fees to the wife before the judge finally ruled that the wife is to pay her own legal fees from that point forward. This is an extreme example. In the Albany, New York area, where I practice, the amount of legal fees generally ranges between $2,500 and $10,000.
Attention New York City Residents: Get more more information on new York Divorce law at the Mark Feldman Law main site