The governor announced the signing on Sunday. Under current law, New York judges can grant divorce only on grounds of cruelty, adultery, abandonment or imprisonment. Divorce can be finalized only one year after a separation agreement is filed, with both sides consenting.
The new measure requires one spouse to swear under oath that a relationship has broken down for at least six months. Property division, alimony, child custody and support would have to be resolved first.
The bill was one of just over 100 that Paterson signed into law. He vetoed 34 bills.