Covid-19, courts backed up and uncontested divorces

Covid-19, courts backed up and uncontested divorces

For more then a year, Poughkeepsie residents along with every other US person have struggled with closed businesses and schools and restrictions. But for those charged with criminal offenses or with various other legal issues that need a court resolution, Covid-19 has put their lives on hold.

Court systems across New York have changed their operations in response to the coronavirus epidemic. Many courts initially limited proceedings to only the most essential and urgent matters, such as arraignments and restraining order hearings.

Nowadays, most matters are continuing to be held virtually, but courts are beginning a gradual process of resuming in-person operations on a limited basis throughout the state.

Delays and backlogs in criminal and civil cases have spread throughout New York’s court system. All these delays mean that many people across the state are staying behind bars for longer, waiting for lawsuits to settle, fighting for child and spousal support, battling criminal charges and, generally, struggling to get justice.

At the Law office of Kevin M MacKay an Expert lawyer team is able to help guide you through these times, based on important lessons learned in the past year.

If you live in the Hudson Valley area and you are dealing with a divorce in these already challenged times, you can find a team who understands your needs and can give you advice and support to go thru this specially when dealing with an uncontested divorce.

Even during the COVID-19 Pandemic, the “no-fault” divorce has three statutory elements which the petitioner has the burden to establish the existence of when proving up the case in a Court:

1 establish that the marriage has become insupportable because of discord or conflict.

2 prove that the discord or conflict destroys the legitimate ends of the marriage.

3prove that there is no reasonable expectation of reconciliation.

The parties seeking divorce will be able to finalize their divorce based on an affidavit of facts to finalize their divorce without appearing in a divorce court.

Enlist the aid of experts to help you create the best possible settlement for yourself regardless of the outcome of the uncertainty. At Kevin M. MacKay Law Office clients that are still drafting and filing divorce paperwork, prenuptial agreements, separation agreements and custody agreements have the possibility of free telephone consultations.

Local experience really matters

At the Law Office of Kevin MacKay we represent our clients in serious legal matters in the Hudson Valley court system; from Ulster County to Dutchess county we truly are the local law firm you are searching for. When you sit at your computer and begin your search for a local attorney near you; it is important to pay attention to where your potential lawyer’s office is actually located. There are many lawyers from miles or states away. This can create serious issues for your case when courts are back in session and your lawyer may have to travel many miles or even hours to represent you in multiple hearings.  At the Law Office of Kevin MacKay we bring over 25 years of experience working in the local Dutchess County and Ulster County court systems. We bring a level of knowledge and experience that an out of town lawyer simply will not offer; local laws very from larger cities and this can also pose a problem for your case. In conclusion as you begin your search please keep in mind that Experience Matters and local experience really matters. This can be an invaluable addition to the outcome of your Dutchess County divorce, child custody or matrimonial.

Ending a marriage in the era of Covid-19

Ending a marriage in the era of Covid-19

The Law Office of Kevin MacKay in Poughkeepsie, NY will help you navigate through the most complex divorce, custody, child support and family law situations. Not filing for your divorce in Dutchess County family court in a timely matter can have serious legal consequences. Ending a marriage in the era of Covid-19 can be extra stressful. I always suggest and work with my clients to create a team around them of family, friends and even advise individual counseling to help a client cope. Working from home, home schooling, job losses, insurance coverage are all new factors creating new challenges amongst married couples. 
Ending a marriage in the era of Covid-19
Don’t be afraid of moving forward? For many people now is the time to start thinking about separation and learning your options. Please schedule a free consultation today. Our staff are extremely knowledgeable and understanding of each client’s unique scenario. We will discuss all of your concerns and together will create a road map to help you move forward in your Dutchess County, NY divorce. If you are living in the Hudson Valley or Poughkeepsie area please consult with me I bring over 25 years of trial experience to your case and together we will help you move forward.
Excellent services
Kevin Mackay is an awesome and caring person. He took the time to listen to my needs and helped me through a very difficult situation. He gave of his time and provided better service than I ever expected. His paralegal Tammy is Awesome as well. Incredible staff, service and kindness is what this firm is all about.

by Ron 

Mark Serino has represented my family in many real estate and business transactions over the years. I must say his eye for detail and focus has saved me a lot of money. Mark's father was my fathers lawyer and I am pleased to keep the tradition going and so will my children. Just a great guy!
Great Lawyer
by Cathy
Mark Serino has represented my family for years. He set up my parents will and also represented many of my family members for the closings of their homes. Mark is always available and really loves his work and that shows. I would like him as a super lawyer!
Supportive/Gets the job done

 by Lisa 

Kevin helped me with my divorce. Most recently he represented me in family court when my ex was refusing to follow portions of our divorce agreement. It went better than expected. I'm happy with the outcome and my ex has changed his tune. Definitely felt better having him with me then going it alone.
Top Notch Lawyer

by Brandie 

Kevin was extremely attentive to my case and always paid attention to detail. All calls were returned immediately and the entire office staff was always helpful and courteous. My case was family court related and he is extremely knowledgeable in this area. I would recommend him to anyone who is looking for a great lawyer.

Top quality representation

by Myra 

Kevin Mackay is the consummate professional, with every angle of every legal issue covered and completely prepared for. His assistance with my divorce and subsequent family court appearances was priceless--I don't know how I would've gotten through it all without his expertise. 
I highly recommend Mr. Mackay's legal services.

Very knowledgeable
by Brittanie
Kevin was my divorce lawyer. He was straight to the point and explained everything. He was also fair to both parties. Kevin is very knowledgeable about family law and the divorce process. He made let me know what to expect and kept me informed. I would highly recommend Kevin
Wonderful and supportive
by Amrita
Kevin MacKay was wonderful and supportive every step of the way. I knew I was in good hands and felt informed and secure throughout the entire process. I recommend him to anyone that needs an attorney for family law.
Wonderful experience

by Jennifer
Kevin Mackay and his Assistant Tammy have been fantastic to work with. I have been so pleased with their attention and professionalism during this difficult process . Words can't express my gratitude to Kevin. He has been very straight forward and knowledgeable. The comfort it brought me to know I was in very capable hands is priceless.
Dutchess County Lawyer answers most common questions to help clients save time and maintain social distancing

Dutchess County Lawyer answers most common questions to help clients save time and maintain social distancing

Dutchess County Lawyer answers most common questions to help clients save time and maintain social distancing

After the Covid-19 restrictions, Courts in Dutchess County, NY are now open for e-filing. Holding off on hiring a lawyer for your divorce at this time can have significant legal consequences. File today and avoid court backlogs and extended wait times. Move forward today with the Law Office of Kevin Mackay.

Before hiring a lawyer in Dutchess County, NY for your divorce, child custody, criminal matter, dui, personal injury case or any other serious legal matter please make sure you ask the following questions.

For the sake of transparency and to save time during your free consultation with the Law Office of Kevin MacKay here are some questions answered for you.

1. How long have you been practicing law? I have been practicing law for 27 years.

2. How many trials have you done? How often do you settle vs try a case? I have done hundreds of trials in divorce actions, family court proceedings and criminal proceedings ranging from traffic matters to murder cases. While many cases do settle, I will never let my clients settle for anything less than they deserve, I am a litigation attorney and will take any case to trial to get the best results for my clients.

3. How much of your practice is devoted to my legal needs? While I practice different areas of law I concentrate mostly on matrimonial and criminal law. I will never take on a case that I was not 100% confident that I can meet your needs and represent you to the best of my abilities.

4. Will you be the attorney appearing in court with me? How do I know you are personally going to handle my case? Just because you say so in your commercial? Yes, I will be appearing with you in Court. I keep in contact with my clients to discuss all aspects of the case, not only will I be handling your case but I keep you involved every step of the way.


5. If necessary to send another attorney in your place to Court with me will you be briefing that attorney to avoid unnecessary Court appearances? While there are times when it is necessary to ask another attorney to cover a court appearance I try to avoid this. In the event that it be 100% necessary that I must ask for attorney coverage: I will only send in an attorney who is experienced in the area of law. I will make sure the covering attorney has all necessary documents and knowledge of your case to provide the best representation on your behalf.

6. Who will be working on my file? I will be working on your file as well as my paralegal.

7. Can I reach you directly in an emergency? Yes, not only am I reachable 24 hours a day 7 days a week through my office phone, I also provide my clients with my cell phone number to reach me in an emergency.

8. What is your client caseload and do you have time to handle my case? Caseloads can fluctuate based upon difference factors. I do not take every case that comes into my office. If I feel that I cannot give your case the time and attention it deserves I will advise you of that and recommend you seek a different attorney.

9. What access do you have to up to date case law and legal research? My office uses Lexis Advance. I have tried other legal research programs but find this is the best.

Contact a Divorce Lawyer in Hudson Valley

Most of us marry intending to stay that way for the rest of our lives. As you know, this doesn’t always mean much, as the divorce rates are rather high. Though there are some that just don’t take marriage seriously, others really try and they end up with a relationship that simply cannot be saved. We know how important family is for our clients.

If you have tried all that you can, and you find that you still can’t stay, you should find a great source for divorce advice. Our divorce lawyer aims to provide legal assistance and representation in family law disputes and tries to find the best solution for you and those you mostly care about.

Dutchess County, NY Criminal Lawyers

Dutchess County, NY Criminal Lawyers

Dutchess County, NY Criminal Lawyers – Free or not to be free, the choice is yours.

Whether you are facing a charge for a violent crime, white collar crime, murder, embezzlement, drugs, or a DWI our Poughkeepsie criminal lawyers have the skills, experience and judgment needed to help you. Call now for a free consultation!

In Dutchess County, NY it’s easy to get a public defender. The public defender finds most accused as indigent without much of a review of the persons financial resources.  This is a double edged sword, on the one hand you can easily qualify for a free attorney and on the other hand everyone can easily qualify for a free attorney.  You will be one of hundreds. So, if you or a family member is currently represented by the public defender then you know that it is difficult to reach your defense attorney because they may not be able to devote the time necessary to your case, potentially overlooking key facts or legal issues that could greatly affect your life.

NY Criminal Lawyers - Call SMANDB Now for a Free consultation 01/18/opinion/public- defenders-new-york.html

The law firm of Kevin MacKay is built on a reputation of integrity and skill in successfully representing individuals against criminal prosecutions in the Hudson Valley. We have been successful in representing local Hudson Valley clients at the investigative stage, discovery stage, motion practice stage, pre-trial hearing stage, and of course at trial.  We have the time necessary to handle one of the most important events and decisions in your life!

Save a buck and lose your life or call today to have a personal one on one free consultation with a lawyer about your situation, or if you prefer, contact us using our email at




If police contact has resulted in you or a family member’s arrest, you need to know your rights.  Our Dutchess County criminal lawyers have the skills, experience and judgment needed to help you. Call now for a free consultation.

The Fourth Amendment of the Constitution protects your right against unreasonable searches & seizures. The most protected place under the Fourth Amendment is your home. A police officer cannot enter your home unless he has a warrant. There are exceptions to this warrant rule, the most used exception is “consent”. “Consent” is when you open the door. So, if a police officer is knocking on your door and you did not call the police, exercise your Constitutional right and do not open the door. Call me.

The Fourth Amendment of the Constitution protects you in your home.  If the police ask you to step outside and talk that is not your home!  Unless the police have a warrant you do not have to let them in and you do not have to step outside.  If you leave the home you may be leaving the shelter of the Fourth Amendment.  You can say “no” and you can tell them “I’m calling my lawyers at Kevin M. Mackay Law.”  Know your rights and more importantly use your rights.


The law firm of Kevin  M. MacKay have built a reputation for integrity and skill in successfully representing individuals against prosecutions in Hudson Valley criminal matters. We have been successful in representing local Poughkeepsie clients at the investigative stage, discovery stage, motion practice stage, pre-trial hearing stage, and of course at trial.

Give us a call today to discuss your specific situation, or if you prefer, contact us using our email at

Why is not a good idea to start a divorce case without a lawyer?

Why it’s not a good idea to start a divorce without a lawyer

A divorce case in Hudson Valley area or in the New York State in general can be fairly simple if both the husband and the wife want to get divorced and they do not have any disagreements about their finances or children. If they have children together, the parents may already have a Family
Court order(s) that decides who has custody and/or visitation and who pays child support. If they also do not have money, property or debt to divide, they may be able to get divorced in less than a year’s time and without hiring
lawyers. People call this kind of case an “uncontested” divorce.

It’s not a good idea to try to start a divorce case without a lawyer.

This is because you must provide a lot of information to the court on many different forms and because there are many things involved in ending most marriages. New York divorce laws are put in place for both the Plaintiff and the Defendant to receive a fair divorce. Hiring a family attorney or mediator in your area is the best way to ensure that this happens.

An experienced attorney will make sure your rights are protected and make sure at the same time that you are not taken advantage of by your ex-partner and her/his attorney.

Divorce lawyers come in all shapes, sizes & colors.  When choosing the right Poughkeepsie divorce attorney for you, make sure you ask the right questions.

You can begin to put your difficult legal matters behind you by scheduling a free initial consultation at our law offices, with one of our seasoned lawyers. We can be reached online or by telephone at 845-462-0001. We welcome your call.

First-Offense DWI vs Second-Offense DWI or DWAI in New York

First-Offense DWI vs Second-Offense DWI or DWAI in New York

A first-offense DWI, sometimes called a DUI (driving under the influence), where the driver has a BAC of .08% or more (up to.18%) carries an administrative license suspension of at least six months (one year for drivers with a BAC of .18% or more or for drivers under 21 years old).

A DWI is considered a second-offense if you had a prior offense within the past ten years. DWAI’s involving drugs or a combination of drugs and alcohol also have a ten-year second-offense look-back period. However, the second-offense look-back period for DWAI’s involving only alcohol is five years.
It’s important to note that New York has multiple look-back periods. Depending on your situation, the look-back period could be four, five, ten, or 25 years. Consult with a New York DWAI attorney to find out which look-back period applies in your case.

According to the New York Department of Motor Vehicles, 33% of all fatalities are due to drunk drivers Because of this, the penalties for an alcohol or drug-related violation include the loss of driving privileges, fines, and a possible jail term.
New York has established severe penalties for DUI. The reason for the severity is not only to punish people who have been arrested for driving drunk, but to set an example to those who haven’t yet. That way, if they are ever in a position where they are considering drunk driving, they will think better of it. And the penalties become even more severe for second- and third-time offenders:

New York first-offense DWI Laws

  • $500 – $1,000 fine
  • Up to 1 year in jail
  • Minimum 6-month license suspension

New York second-offense DWI Laws(within 10 years)

  • $500 – $1,000 fine
  • Up to 4 years in jail
  • Minimum 1-year license suspension

At Kevin M. MacKay we have handled thousands of DWI cases of the course of our careers and more importantly have brought hundreds of these cases to either trial or hearing.  When looking for the right attorney experience matters come in and meet with one of our attorneys for a free consultation on your matter today.  

drink driving new york law

DUI and DWI explained for New York State

This article is made for better understanding DUI and DWI in the New York State. If you are facing those charges you can better understand them before contacting Lawyers For DWI or DUI.

A DWI refers to when a driver is intoxicated; that is, when his or her blood alcohol content level (BAC) is at the legal limit (0.08 percent) or higher. A DUI generally refers to a driver who is “buzzed” (has a BAC lower than 0.08 percent), intoxicated, or under the influence of drugs.

Alcohol reduces reaction time, reduces your ability to see clearly, changes your judgment of speed and distances, often makes you less inhibited and makes you more prone to take chances. Drugs, which include many prescription and over-the-counter medications, can affect your ability to drive. They can have effects similar to alcohol or even worse. If you take medication, even a remedy for colds or allergies that is not prescribed, check the label for warnings about its effects. If you are unsure, ask your doctor or pharmacist about driving while on the medication.

Driving while intoxicated is a crime. Your judgment, coordination and ability to drive a vehicle change when you consume any amount of alcohol. The level of impairment depends on five conditions

  • the amount of alcohol you drink
  • the amount of food you eat before or while you drink alcohol
  • the length of time you drink alcohol
  • your body weight
  • your gender

There is no quick method to become sober. The best method is to wait until your body absorbs the alcohol. The average rate that your body processes alcohol is approximately one drink per hour.

Contact Lawyers at the Law Office of Kevin M. MacKay online or call 845-432-5599. Our firm also represents students at Vassar College, The Culinary Institute of America, and Marist students who are facing DWI charges.

DUI and DWI explained