Get on the path to resUlts today.
Get on the path to resUlts today.
Divorce sucks. No one gets married with the idea in mind “I can’t wait to take you to court and divide up the furniture.” And if you had that idea saying your vows, you should’ve stopped in to discuss options available for premarital agreements.
An “absolute divorce” is what you generally think of when you think “divorce.” To sever your legal bond from your spouse and select that “single” filing status again, one party must file for divorce. In order to do so though, you must be separated from your spouse for a year. While, it is a common misconception that you must have a “legal separation” in order to get a divorce, the issue of separation can become quite contentious if the break-up was not a clean break at separate addresses.
However, it is all the other things that come along with divorce that make it complicated. For instance, in most cases, if you and your soon to be ex-spouse do not deal with the property division and alimony claims before a divorce action is granted, those issues can be forever waived. In order to know your rights under the law you should seek out a consultation with a licensed and skilled attorney early to make sure you are making the best decisions for you and your particular situation.
Dividing up assets that have been acquired during marriage is known in the legal world as “Equitable Distribution.” The name is unique as it is not “equal” distribution. This claim in North Carolina presumes that a 50/50 split is equitable and fair. However, the law provides for specific grounds to when a spouse might be entitled to an unequal distribution. For instance, if a couple of a 20 year marriage splits up and one is an active CEO and makes a $100k+ salary, and the other spouse is a homemaker and has not been in the workforce for years, a 50/50 split of their property would not leave the parties on equal footing. The homemaker put their own career path on hold while the CEO spouse excelled. This is presumed for the benefit of the marriage and thus in order to make things “fair” and leave the parties on equal footing, the court would likely award more than 50% to the homemaker to assist in the transition from married life to single life.
Property division is a complicated matter that requires precision in classification of assets, valuation thereof, and sometimes the expertise of experts to evaluate property, business interests, and other unique assets the parties may own. This claim does have a time limit, of sorts, for filing. If the parties fail to deal with their property in either a separation agreement or a lawsuit with the court, prior to a divorce being granted, they may forever lose that right under the equitable distribution statutes in North Carolina. In order to avoid any missteps, it is highly encouraged that you seek out the advice of a skilled attorney who is in this practice area to evaluate your unique situation and advise you of likely outcomes.
Separating from the person you said “forever” to is hard enough. But when you must do that, on top of trying to make up for more than half of the finances can be overwhelming, and frightening. North Carolina law allows for financial support for a spouse that needs supplemental income to meet their needs and expenses. Post Separation Support is the financial support during separation and is only temporary in nature. Alimony is the financial support that is more "permanent” and solidifies one spouse’s obligation to the other for a time certain. Several factors go into figuring alimony, but you may be surprised to know that North Carolina does not have a systematic, universal way to determine the obligation amount. Therefore, figuring out what you may be entitled to, or be required to pay, is not as simple as plugging incomes into a worksheet and coming up with a number. A well negotiated alimony settlement requires experience and consideration of other property factors. Contact us at the Remington Locker Law, PLLC to set up an appointment today.