Separation and Divorce

Filing for Divorce in Charlotte

Divorce and Separation in North Carolina

There are many misconceptions about what constitutes a "legal separation" in the State of North Carolina. To this point, there is no requirement that you enter into any type of Separation Agreement for you to be legally separated under the law. Rather, as a general rule (with some caveats), in the State of North Carolina you are separated if you and your spouse are living in separate residences and it is the intent of at least one of you to be separated with the intent to obtain a divorce in the future.

Divorce in North Carolina

The concept of separation logically leads us to the concept of divorce. As you may recall, if you are in fact legally married, then you obtained a marriage license from your local courthouse. In this vein, a divorce is the process by which the legal union between you and your spouse (which was created by the marriage license) is terminated.

In the State of North Carolina, there is only one requirement for obtaining a divorce. Specifically, you merely must have been separated from your spouse for one year and one day. As such, assuming you have met this requirement, you may file for divorce from your spouse. Your request will be granted unless your spouse is able to successfully contest your assertion that you and your spouse have in fact been separated for one year and one day.

It is important to note at this point that the actual divorce should really be the final step in the process of not only dissolving the marriage, but also in terms of negotiating and resolving all of the issues which are associated with a marriage. Specifically, while a divorce dissolves the legal bond between you and your spouse, a divorce judgment does not usually resolve the issues of child custody, child support, spousal support (alimony), and property division (equitable distribution). Rather, upon separation from your spouse, or before separation if possible, you should consult with a Charlotte divorce attorney in regards to how you may resolve the issues associated with your marriage well before it comes time to obtain a divorce.

This process typically involves the negotiation and execution of a private contract which is called a separation, property settlement, alimony, child custody, and child support agreement (or any combination or variation thereof depending upon your individual circumstances). Alternatively, if negotiation of the relevant issues is not successful, you and your attorney may choose to file a lawsuit with the Court in order to resolve the custodial and/or financial issues associated with your marriage. In other words, even though the State of North Carolina requires that you be separated for one year and one day before you may obtain a divorce, you can immediately move forward with resolving the custodial and/or financial issues which flow from a marriage once separation has been initiated.

Finally, a word of caution: You must have either resolved any spousal support (alimony) or property division (equitable distribution) issues through a private contract, OR, you must have filed your claims regarding these issues notifying the Court that you need assistance, prior to the entry of a Judgment of Divorce. Otherwise, you will lose your right to pursue these issues once a Divorce between you and your spouse has been granted.

Contact Coggin Law to learn more. We can be reached by calling (704) 286-0600.

Why Choose Us?

  • Seasoned

    Our attorney has 20 years of unmatched experience exclusively practicing Family Law.

  • One-On-One Attention

    We pride ourselves on being extremely responsive to our client’s needs. When you hire our firm, you get your attorney's one-on-one attention.

  • Collaborative

    We will attempt to resolve your case in the most efficient and cost-effective manner possible, by taking a collaborative approach prior to considering court action.

  • Detailed

    Whether preparing for a meeting with you, or in preparation for mediation or trial, we take a “details matter” approach to every case.

Alienation of Affection/Criminal Conversation
Child Custody
Mediation/Collaborative Law
Premarital Consults
Separation/Divorce
Spousal Support/Alimony
Why You Should Not Wait to File for Divorce to Resolve Your Custody and Financial Issues
  • Alienation of Affection/Criminal Conversation
  • Child Custody
  • Mediation/Collaborative Law
  • Premarital Consults
  • Separation/Divorce
  • Spousal Support/Alimony
  • Why You Should Not Wait to File for Divorce to Resolve Your Custody and Financial Issues

Our Testimonials

Stories From Our Happy Clients
  • “Gerry Coggin knows the law and drafts legal documents with precision.”

    - Lindsay
  • “Gerry has proved to take a very complex legal matter and resolved it to my satisfaction.”

    - Clarence
  • “Gerry Coggin and his staff, hands down, have made every single transition with each of my needs SEAMLESS.”

    - Daniel
  • “Gerry demonstrated an understanding of the psychological aspects of this tough time in life, a skill that proved to be invaluable throughout my case.”

    - Andrew
  • “From the moment I hired him I was finally able to breath a sigh of relief knowing every detail would be taken care of.”

    - Kelly
/