Divorce law in south carolina

In addition, the number of hours an attorney has to work on a case depends on the case. For example, if there is a lot of property to divide or if the parties cannot agree and the case must go to trial, the amount of time an attorney will spend on the case will likely increase. Most attorneys bill hourly for contested divorce cases, and the more the attorney works, the more it costs.

Divorce counseling or marriage counseling is not required. The parties will need to attend mediation to try to resolve all issues involved in the marital litigation other than the issue of divorce itself, which is a decision reserved for the Court. Some people refer to a settlement agreement as a divorce settlement.

A settlement agreement is an agreement between the parties to settle all issues stemming from the marital litigation save the issue of divorce, which is an issue reserved for the court.

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Once a party is divorced, the party may get remarried. Remarriage will stop most forms of alimony. Divorce proceedings themselves do not have a specific amount of time they take. All Family Court cases must be resolved within days of filing unless an extension is granted by the Court , or the case will be dismissed.

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Although there is a one-year period of separation for no-fault divorces, that is not how long divorce proceedings take. There are different forms of alimony in South Carolina. Types of alimony include lump sum alimony, periodic alimony, rehabilitative alimony, and reimbursement alimony. The law favors periodic, permanent alimony. Most alimony obligations terminate if the other party remarries or cohabits with another person. Except for lump sum alimony, alimony terminates upon the death of either party. There are many South Carolina divorce laws. Generally speaking, divorces can be granted on the no-fault basis of one year continuous separation or on the fault grounds of adultery, habitual drunkenness, physical cruelty, and desertion for a period of one year which is not really used anymore.

Separation is the period after the parties separate, but before a divorce is granted. There may be a temporary order or an order of separate maintenance and support issued by the court to determine issues prior to the parties being eligible for a divorce. Mediation is required for a divorce if any issues are contested.

If the parties cannot agree on what should happen, they must attend at least three hours of mediation. The fault grounds for divorce in South Carolina are adultery, habitual drunkenness, physical cruelty, and desertion for a period of one year which is not really used anymore. The only no-fault ground for divorce in South Carolina is one year continuous separation.

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It depends on how much time you need. An uncontested divorce hearing usually takes fifteen 15 minutes and is usually scheduled within a few weeks of a party requesting a final hearing. That is, the date of the divorce hearing will be a few weeks out from the request for hearing being filed. A contested divorce hearing may take days or weeks, and it will be scheduled further out. I recommend hiring a divorce attorney.

There are many issues that a person may not realize are issues. It is important to know what your rights are, even if you choose not to exercise them. If you are contemplating a divorce you are sure to have at least a few questions about the journey ahead. Making an informed decision is key. If you have questions about divorce or are looking for a family law attorney in Summerville, South Carolina give me a call at What do I do after being served with divorce papers? Is there a separate divorce court in SC? Is a divorce public record? Is there a form to file for a divorce? How do I get a divorce?

How to File for Divorce in South Carolina

What is the difference between annulment vs divorce? How much does a divorce cost? Is divorce counseling required? What is a divorce settlement? Unfortunately, verbal abuse and emotional cruelty are not enough to satisfy this requirement in South Carolina. The cruelty must be physical. You can prove this through:. You must show that your spouse habitually uses alcohol or other intoxicating substances. This may include marijuana, opioids, heroin, or any other illegal drug. You must prove that your spouse has a habit of using these drugs and that it interferes with your marriage or parenting your children.

Code of Laws - Title 20 - Chapter 3 - Divorce

This can be proven by bank records or receipts that show your spouse regularly visits bars or liquor stores. Arrest records for possession of illegal drugs may also help you prove your case. In South Carolina, you can allege both a fault and no-fault divorce in the complaint.

However, if your divorce goes to trial, you must pick which divorce you want. Fault divorces require you to prove additional facts that would entitle you a fault divorce. A no-fault divorce only requires that you have lived in South Carolina long enough to seek a divorce in South Carolina, that your marriage was a valid marriage, and that you have satisfied the one-year separation requirement. Do you have a lot of property to divide in the divorce?

South Carolina courts may take fault int account when dividing marital property. If your spouse did something terrible, the court may decide that you should get a larger, yet still fair, portion of the marital property that you otherwise would have. Are you at fault, too?

The differences between divorce, annulment and legal separation

But if you also had your own affair, you can bet your spouse is going to bring this up at court. Unless your hands are clean, the no-fault option may be the best way to go. Does your spouse have some other good defense? If your spouse had an affair years ago, or you knew about the affair but your marriage resumed as usual, your spouse can claim this defense. If your spouse committed some act that that hurt you, the judge will want to see that there has been little to no forgiveness for their sins. All states now have some form of no-fault divorces.

The remaining 33 states still have fault-based divorces. Over the years, states wanted the courts to look less at whether a spouse was at fault for the marriage, and instead allow spouses to leave a damaged marriage Being able to marry is a fundamental right. Courts now recognize being able to leave a marriage is a fundamental right as long as the court has jurisdiction, or power, to grant a divorce.

For the other states that recognize fault divorces, the grounds for fault divorces differ depending on the states. A marital obligation may be failing to be monogamous, or failing to support each other financially. Other states will consider the conviction of a felony a fault ground for divorce. Other states will have different grounds with their own nuances. Fault Divorce v. No-Fault Divorce in South Carolina. View Larger Image. What is a fault divorce in South Carolina?

Does South Carolina have Fault Divorces? South Carolina has four different grounds that a person can ask for a fault divorce: Adultery; Desertion for more than one year; Physical cruelty; and Habitual Drunkenness or drug use Fault divorces in South Carolina may prevent your spouse from seeking alimony.

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The thinking behind this is that a spouse that caused the marriage to fail should not be further rewarded. If one spouse alleges one of the fault grounds for divorce, that spouse must prove it to the court with evidence. Sometimes, proving these grounds can be difficult and may require some creative thinking. Adultery: To prove adultery in a fault divorce, you must show that your spouse had the opportunity to commit adultery. Desertion: To prove desertion, you must show that your spouse deserted you for at least one year.

Grounds for Divorce in South Carolina ~ Gary Finklea

Physical Cruelty: To prove that your spouse was physically cruel to you, you must prove that there was at least one incident of physical violation by your spouse against you. Habitual Drunkenness or Drug Use: You must show that your spouse habitually uses alcohol or other intoxicating substances.

Do I have to choose between filing for a fault divorce and a no-fault divorce? Does it matter if I allege grounds for a fault divorce? It depends. Here are some thinks to think about when you make your decision.