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Make a document Start a business Ask a lawyer Solutions Pricing. The State of North Carolina still requires grounds for divorce , but they do offer one no-fault ground: "one-year separation". If any other reason is provided as grounds for divorce the Plaintiff must allege that the reason has existed for at least six 6 months.
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Residency Requirements The North Carolina Court System will not grant a divorce unless the parties have been legally separated for over a year and one of the spouses must be a resident of North Carolina for at least six 6 months prior to filing for divorce. Legal Separation is defined as living separate and apart. Fill Out your Forms To begin the action for divorce, one spouse must file a Summons and Complaint in either their own or their spouse's County District Court. The spouse who files the initial Summons is called the Petitioner, and the other spouse is now called the Respondent.
A Guide to Divorce in North Carolina
Before a court can have jurisdiction authority to enter an order, one spouse must file a complaint initiating a lawsuit against the other spouse. Once a lawsuit has been opened, the court can resolve issues such as child custody and support, visitation, short term spousal support, alimony, and property division. Can all property items be divided by the court? For example, property acquired by either spouse before the marriage or by gift or inheritance during the marriage is generally considered to be separate property and exempt from division.
Is the property always divided equally? Although the law presumes that the marital property and debt should be split evenly between the spouses, the court may award a larger share of the property to one spouse under certain circumstances.
Answers to 10 Frequently Asked Questions About North Carolina Divorce
Does the court consider adultery when it makes a decision regarding division of property? Adultery on the part of either spouse is generally not relevant to the issue of property division, unless such adultery can be tied to financial misconduct. What factors does the court consider before dividing the property? Is there any way to avoid a court-ordered division of property? If the husband and wife can agree, they can divide the property as they see fit. Their decision regarding division of property must be included in a properly executed separation agreement that is signed by both parties with both signatures properly notarized.
How does the court determine alimony? Post-separation support and alimony can be granted by the court when there is a need for spousal support. The party requesting support must actually be dependent on the other spouse for support or substantially in need of such support.
The other spouse must be the supporting spouse; that is, the one able to pay such support. Post-separation support is temporary and lasts only until an alimony hearing or until the support is otherwise terminated. Does the court consider adultery when it makes a decision regarding alimony? At a hearing regarding alimony, the court shall consider marital misconduct by the parties in deciding whether to award support.
If the dependent spouse committed adultery before the date of separation and the other spouse can prove it, the dependent spouse is not entitled to alimony, even if he or she is otherwise entitled to support. If the supporting spouse committed adultery before the date of separation and the other spouse can prove it, he or she must be ordered to pay alimony.
If both parties committed adultery before the date of separation, alimony is at the discretion of the court. What if my spouse is ordered to pay alimony and does not abide by the court order? If a party ordered to pay refuses to do so, the intended recipient may ask the court for an order holding the other party in contempt of court. North Carolina law provides various remedies for failure to pay alimony.
An attorney can listen to the facts of your situation and should be able to give you expert, practical advice about your legal rights and options.
How to File for No Fault Divorce in North Carolina - State Requirements and Documents
They can also argue on your behalf in court, and they may be able to draw from their knowledge of the law to highlight important information that could affect the outcome of your case. Sometimes, this information might be a detail or event that a person with no legal training would have a hard time recognizing as important or even relevant. Skip to content. How do I file for divorce? How much will the divorce process cost?
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