Living apart is not considered “separated” under the law. As far as the law is concerned, you are still married, and all the property you acquired during this time is considered marital property. Each one has an interest in the other’s property until you are legally separated and divorced.
You can file for divorce without your wife’s consent, but you must have some grounds which are recognized in the State of New York.
If you are living in the New York City metropolitan area, call me to arrange for a meeting to try to mediate a separation and divorce so that you will both be able to get on with your lives without having interference and financial consequences coming from the other party. It is essential that you do this with an experienced attorney-mediator and not leave this to self-help.
Leonard M. Weiner, Esq./Divorce Solutions