Divorce

In order to be divorced from your spouse in the state of North Carolina, you must live separate and apart from one another for at least one year, and at least one of the parties must have the intent to end the marriage on a permanent basis. After the year period has run, either party may petition the Court for a divorce from their spouse. Additionally, at least one of the spouses must live in the state of North Carolina for at least 6 months in order to file for a divorce in this state. It should be noted that living separate and apart from one another does not mean living in the same household, and in different rooms. Rather, it means living at separate addresses.

Furthermore, there cannot be a resumption of the marital relationship during the period of separation. Although isolated incidents of sexual intercourse between the parties does not constitute a resumption of the marital relationship, a voluntary renewal of the relationship on a more extensive basis may very well suffice as a resumption of the marital relationship. The effect of such a reconciliation would mean the parties would have to start the one year period over again if and when they separated once again.

Divorce in North Carolina

You may also notice that North Carolina is a “no-fault” state, meaning that in the dissolution of a marriage neither party has to prove fault by the other party in order to seek a divorce. Again, all that is required is that:

  • the parties intend to be divorced from one another
  • they live separate and apart from one another for one year
  • one party has resided in the state of North Carolina for at least 6 months

Other aspects of divorce

Although there are many complex issues incident to a divorce (see below), obtaining the actual divorce decree from the Court can be a rather straightforward process with the right advice and attorney.

Choosing the Right Attorney

Before filing for a divorce, it is imperative that you consult with a reputable and knowledgeable attorney so that you are advised of the process in more detail, the possibility of resuming you maiden name (if applicable), and potentially preserving other claims that must be asserted before your divorce is finalized (equitable distribution and postseparation support/alimony).

 

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