Divorce is always a difficult process, and for many people, it will be the first time in their lives that they ever require the assistance of an attorney or face the processes of the South Carolina family court system. Add to that the emotional challenges of a divorce case, and things can get confusing and overwhelming very quickly. Furthermore, before you even begin, you have to ask yourself if you’re really ready to go through with it. If you are, you need to know what your options are, what you’ll need to do, and how to be prepared. Today, we’ll discuss some of the questions that you should ask yourself before starting the process and answer some of the most important questions that people have when going through a divorce in South Carolina. To get answers to more specific questions concerning your own unique situation, contact the attorneys at Lauren Taylor Law to schedule a free consultation.
One in Five People Turn to a Divorce Attorney Before They Are Ready
Getting divorced is one of the biggest decisions that you may make in your life, and it is a decision that you make your family as well as yourself. It’s something you shouldn’t take lightly and need to consider very carefully before you take those first steps. Dr. Phil has pointed out that one in five people who seek a consultation with a divorce attorney are not actually ready to follow through with the divorce (http://www.drphil.com/shows/1340/).
Divorce attorneys know that this is common among the potential clients who turn to them for advice, so most will talk to you about the options and alternatives that might keep your family together, instead. This is not to dissuade you from what may truly be the best thing for everyone involved, but to make sure that you are confident that this is so before you file for divorce. According to Dr. Phil and experts in various family and marriage fields, there are certain questions that you need to ask yourself to ensure that you’re making the right choice.
Questions To Ask Yourself Before You File For Divorce in South Carolina
The first thing you need to ask yourself is if you have made any and all efforts to improve your relationship and keep your family together. Then, you need to consider whether or not there are emotional issues that have not yet been resolved. If there are children in your family, then you’ve also got to ask yourself if you are ready and willing to develop a healthy co-parenting relationship with the other parent and how you hope to achieve that goal.
Finally, make sure that you know what you’re doing from a legal standpoint and have thoroughly researched the legal process and financial impact of divorce. If you are not happy and healthy within your relationship, and if these issues cannot be improved, then you should not let fears of the future stand in the way of what is best for you and your family. You should, however, be fully cognizant of the issues that you’re going to face and be prepared to face them.
Options for Improving Your Marriage to Prevent Divorce
If you aren’t sure about the first question, as to whether or not you’ve done everything you can to improve your marriage, in an effort to prevent divorce and keep your family together, then there are a few steps that you might wish to take to do so. You can educate yourself about the most common issues in marriages and how they can be resolved by reading books on the subject. You can seek out counseling for yourself and your partner. Marriage counseling has saved many marriages, and in some cases, one or both spouses might need individual counseling, as well to address the issues that disrupt your happiness. Some people find the advice and guidance they need by confiding in their church leaders. If you have done what you can and come to the conclusion that it is best to end the marriage, then you will need to focus on the emotional and legal aspects of divorce and family law.
What You Need to Know About Divorce Laws in South Carolina
To start with, if you wish to file for divorce within the state of South Carolina, you must be a resident of the state for a minimum of one year prior to the date that you wish to file. If you do not live in South Carolina, but the person that you are trying to divorce (the defendant) does, then South Carolina is the correct state to file in. If the defendant has lived in South Carolina for one year, then the plaintiff can have lived in South Carolina for three months to file.
Requirements for a No Fault Divorce in South Carolina
No fault divorces are allowed in South Carolina. The only requirement is to live separately for at least one year, consecutively, meaning there can be no periods of cohabitation during that time.
Requirements for a Fault Based Divorce Due to Adultery
If you wish to file a fault based divorce due to adultery, you must prove that the spouse had the opportunity to be adulterous and the inclination to do so. Because you can’t usually prove this based on the other party admitting to adultery, you may need a private investigator to gather and produce the evidence of adultery that you require for this kind of divorce.
Requirements for a Fault Based Divorce Due to Desertion
Desertion refers to a situation in which your spouse has ‘abandoned’ you, has been gone for at least one year, has ceased communication, and withdrawn all support.
Requirements for a Fault Based Divorce Due to Physical Cruelty or Abuse
While this kind of fault based divorce may seem self explanatory, there are some specific conditions required to allege that physical cruelty or abuse are legitimate grounds for divorce in South Carolina. In other words, one instance of physical cruelty or abuse will not be enough to validate your grounds for divorce. Rather, you must establish, through evidence (like reports from your physician), that there is a pattern of abuse in the relationship. Unfortunately, psychological abuse and emotional abuse are not acceptable grounds.
Requirements for a Fault Based Divorce Due to Habitual Drunkenness or Intoxication
When it comes to filing for divorce based on the grounds of habitual drunkenness or intoxication, you must prove that there is a pattern of use or addiction to alcohol or a narcotic drug, which causes the person to behave in an unhealthy manner and which has resulted in breakdown of your relationship, as of the time that you file for divorce.
Contact Lauren Taylor Law to Learn More About Divorce in South Carolina
If you’re considering filing for divorce and want to learn more about the options and processes associated with doing so, contact a compassionate Greenville divorce attorney at Lauren Taylor Law to get all of your questions answered and information concerning how the laws apply to your situation.