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5 FAQ’s About North Carolina Divorce Law

Ferguson Hayes Hawkins, PLLC Jan. 25, 2017

If you are seeking a divorce in North Carolina, you will have several legal questions that you want answered before you begin the divorce process. This is not unusual. Some of the most frequently asked questions about divorce have been answered below by our local Concord family lawyer, James DeMay.

1. Is North Carolina a No Fault State?

North Carolina is a No Fault and At Fault state for divorce. Depending on the situation, you may file for either one. Each of these types of divorces has specific legal requirements. You should speak with a local family lawyer to see which type of divorce applies to your situation.

2. What Is A No Fault Divorce?

When you file for divorce in NC using the No Fault laws, there does not have to be any specific reason for the divorce. Most people refer to these types of divorce actions as “Irreconcilable differences.” North Carolina law, however, requires that the couple remain separated for a period of one year prior to the divorce being granted. Under the law, separated is defined as living in two different residences for this period of time with the intent of not reconciling.

3. What Is an At Fault Divorce?

North Carolina law allows people under certain circumstances to avoid the one year waiting period or a divorce. These people are granted a divorce if:

  • There is physical, mental, or emotional abuse that makes life unbearable.

  • One person in the couple abandoned the family

  • A spouse turns the other spouse out into the street in a malicious manner

  • One spouse imposes intolerable indignities on the other spouse

  • One spouse becomes an excessive user of drugs or alcohol making life unbearable

  • One spouse commits adultery

Our Concord divorce attorneys will explain to you which type of divorce you should seek and what the process is for either type of case.

4. My Spouse Does Not Want a Divorce – Now What?

Under North Carolina No Fault divorce laws, both parties do not have to consent to the divorce. The only two requirements that must be met in a No Fault divorce is that the separation for one year has been completed and that at least one party has been a resident of the state for at least six months.

5. What About All the Nitty Gritty?

Before you file for divorce in NC, you will have negotiated with your former spouse about all the “nitty gritty” details. This will include division of assets and debts, spousal support and obligations, child custody and support, as well as other details. This is one of the reasons that a divorce takes time to settle. The best thing to do is enter into your separation with a formal separation agreement and that way everything is being settled during the separation period and the divorce can process quickly.

If you are facing a divorce in North Carolina, call our trusted and experienced divorce attorneys today and schedule an appointment for a case review.