Matter of Geraghty

Supreme Court of New Hampshire

150 A.3d 386 (N.H. 2016)

In determining which state law governs a divorce proceeding, a court must seek to maintain the predictability of results and reasonable orderliness among the states, simplify the judicial task, advance its own state’s governmental interests, and uphold its preference for what it regards as the sounder rule of law.

Relevant Facts

Kenneth (the plaintiff) and Paula Geraghty (the respondent) got married in New York in 1986. In 1990, they moved to Massachusetts. In 2008, they moved to New Hampshire and bought property. In 2013, The respondent petitioned for divorce in a New Hampshire state court. In 2015, the plaintiff petitioned for an annulment on the ground of fraud in response to the respondent’s petition for divorce, alleging that, unbeknownst to him, the respondent had engaged in prostitution and used illegal drugs prior to their marriage. The plaintiff argued that New York law should govern the proceedings.

The trial court granted a divorce decree, finding that New Hampshire law governed and that the plaintiff’s claims were an insufficient basis for an annulment. The plaintiff appealed.

Issue

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Holding & Reasoning

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Concurrence

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Dissent

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Last updated:

December 12, 2020

Judicial Opinion

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Procedural History

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Citations

150 A.3d 386 (N.H. 2016)